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Last edited 11 Nov 2016
Specific heat capacity
The higher the specific heat capacity of a substance, the more energy is required to raise its temperature.
Specific heat capacity (c) in J (joules) / kg °C can be calculated as:
c = E/m θ
- E is the energy transfer in J.
- m is the mass of the substances in kg.
- θ is the temperature change in °C.
Some examples of the specific heat capacities of different substances are listed below:
- Aluminum 902 J/kg°C
- Copper 385 J/kg°C
- Gold 129 J/kg°C
- Iron 450 J/kg°C
- Lead 128 J/kg°C
- NaCl 864 J/kg°C
- Oxygen 918 J/kg°C
- Water 4181 J/kg°C
- Brick / block: 840 J/kg°C
- Concrete: 880 J/kg°C
- Marble: 880 J/kg°C
- Steel: 480 J/kg°C
- Timber: 1200 J/kg°C
Specific heat capacity is one of the properties that contributes to the thermal mass of a material, that is, how much heat it can store. Water, which has a very high specific heat capacity, is very effective at storing heat.
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