Specific heat capacity or specific heat is a material property which can be determined as the amount of heat per unit mass required to increase the temperature of the material by one unit. For example, at a temperature of 15 °C, the heat energy required to raise water’s temperature 1°C more is 4186 joules per kilogram.

More heat energy is required to increase the temperature of a substance with high specific heat capacity that means a substance with a large specific heat heats up slowly than one with low specific heat.

Units and Measures

Specific heat is proportional to the heat energy and inversely proportional to the mass of the material and the temperature difference. Specific heat can be determined when known amount heat energy passes through a material with known mass get hotter by 1 degree.

Following are the units of specific heat: * SI Units: Joule per gram kelvin (J/g•K) * Imperial Units: British thermal unit per pound degree Fahrenheit (Btu /lb•°F)

Example Values

  • Glass - 0.2 kcal/kgoC
  • Bricks - 0.22 kcal/kgoC
  • Concrete - 0.18 kcal/kgoC

Useful References

http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/specific-heat-solids-d_154.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Specific_heat_capacity http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/HBASE/thermo/spht.html http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/558717/specific-heat


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