Importance of metal alloys

Copper V.S. Aluminum: Which Is the Better Conductor of Heat?

Copper and aluminum are indispensable metals used during different production processes. These two metals are used to manufacture items that almost everybody uses. But you might wonder: When it comes to heat conductivity, which of these essential metals is superior? To understand this, we must look into the heat transfer science between both metals. This blog will give a detailed analysis of the better heat conductor between copper and aluminum. 

Understanding Thermal Conductivity

A metal’s thermal conductivity relates to its ability to conduct heat. Conducting heat is a vital quality that a metal possesses. It is a factor that counts in the production process, especially for cooling systems. Atomic motion within a substance is fundamentally what controls its thermal conductivity. The lattice effect makes copper and aluminum crystalline structures exceptional heat conductors. It is worth mentioning that thermal conductivity is subject to change with the influence of temperature and alloy composition.

The Metal that Best Conducts Heat

Although both metals perform well in conducting heat, copper still stands out best. Its capacity to conduct heat is second to none and is many steps ahead of aluminum. Aluminum thermal conductivity is about 237 W/mK (watts per meter kelvin) compared to copper with roughly 401 W/mK. This is why manufacturers can only use copper for cooking utensils and HVAC system production. Heat dissipation is critical, and only a metal that can conduct the highest amount of heat will function effectively for this purpose. It deals with tasks requiring heat control due to its outstanding thermal conductivity.

Real-World Application of Copper and Aluminum

Many manufacturers exhibit applying these metals’ thermal conductivity across different production activities. This further highlights the importance of copper and aluminum to human existence. Copper is used to produce electronic components like smartphone batteries and computer processors. Its presence ensures effective scattering of heat for endurance and optimal performance. Like copper, automotive engineering utilizes aluminum because it is not a heavy metal, and its thermal conductivity is superb. It is the ideal metal for heat exchangers and specific engine parts, contributing to higher fuel efficiency.

Contact Markham Metals For Custom Copper & Aluminum Fabrication In New England

Copper and aluminum are vital metals. Because of their exceptional thermal conductivity, they are critical in manufacturing heat-generating products. When heat conduction is of high importance, copper remains the best. However, when items do not necessarily need to conduct heat, aluminum performs fine and offers durability. That shows the importance of adopting proper materials for thermal management demands. Markham Metals has a proven track record of over 30 years of delivering effective solutions tailored to diverse industries. Contact us today by filling out our contact form or calling us at 978-658-1121!


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