2019 Thermal Properties of Materials

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Materials Science and Engineering
Morikawa Junko 
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Course description and aims

Thermophysical properties (thermal conductivity, thermal diffusivity, thermal effusivity, heat capacity) are reviewed from view points of materials science and engineering. Organic and polymeric materials, composites and bio-materials are the main topics, however, general theory of inorganic materials, and metals are introduced. The micro- and macro-scopic thermal properties are discussed in relation with the existing advanced materials. The methodology of measuring methods is reviewed with regard to the International standard (ISO). The concept of thermal design is also reviewed.

Student learning outcomes

Thermal science and engineering are reviewed in view points of thermophysical properties of materials and its related engineering. By learning the methodology of measuring methods of thermophysical properties, a practical application of thermal design is understood. The thermal design is learned with the examples of advanced materials related to the energy topics and life sciences. The introduction of international standard (ISO) on thermophysical properties makes it possible to learn from the global standard view points.


thermal conductivity, thermal diffusivity, thermal effusivity, heat capacity, thermal design

Competencies that will be developed

Intercultural skills Communication skills Specialist skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Before coming to class, students should read the course schedule and check what topics will be covered. Required learning should be completed outside of the classroom for preparation and review purposes.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Practical methods for the measurement of heat transport properties of materials − principles, applications, and standards − Understand the general principles of thermophysical properties.
Class 2 Thermal conductivity of polymers and the size effects Understand the thermal conductivity of polymers.
Class 3 Practical methods for the measurement of heat transport properties of polymers − principles, applications, and standards − Understand the methodology of measuring the thermal conductivity and thermal diffusivity of polymers.
Class 4 Introduction to heat transfer and its application at the nanoscale Understand the heat transfer.
Class 5 Modeling and measurement in nanoscale heat transfer Understand the nanoscale heat transfer measurement and modeling.
Class 6 Heat capacity measurement and temperature modulated DSC Understand the heat capacity measurement and temperature modulated DSC.
Class 7 Recent topics on thermal design Understand the recent topics of thermal design.


Not required.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Materials used in class can be found on OCW-i.

Assessment criteria and methods

Student's course scores are based on the report submitted.

Related courses

  • MAT.P324 : Processing of Organic Materials A
  • MAT.P325 : Processing of Organic Materials B

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites are necessary, but enrollment in the related courses is desirable.

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