Technical Briefs

Experimental Investigations on the Thermal Conductivity of Silica Aerogels by a Guarded Thin-Film-Heater Method

[+] Author and Article Information
Sandra Spagnol1

Laboratoire PHASE, Université de Toulouse, Bâtiment 3R1, 118 Route de Narbonne, 31062 Toulouse Cedex 9, Francespagnol@cict.fr

Bérangère Lartigue, Alain Trombe

Laboratoire PHASE, Université de Toulouse, Bâtiment 3R1, 118 Route de Narbonne, 31062 Toulouse Cedex 9, France

Florence Despetis

Groupe d’Etude des Semiconducteurs, Université Montpellier II, Place Eugène Bataillon, 34095 Montpellier Cedex 5, Francedespetis@univ-montp2.fr


Corresponding author.

J. Heat Transfer 131(7), 074501 (Apr 30, 2009) (4 pages) doi:10.1115/1.3089547 History: Received March 06, 2008; Revised January 26, 2009; Published April 30, 2009

A thin-film-heater method is setup to measure the thermal conductivity of super insulating materials such as silica aerogels. The experimental setup is purposely designed for insulating materials and allows direct measurement of the thermal conductivity. Few experimental data are available in the literature concerning thermal conductivity of aerogels even though these materials are of major interest in thermal insulation. More data are necessary in order to understand thermal transport and to validate existing models. Monolithic and granular silica aerogels are investigated. Our experimental technique enables to quantify the influence of important parameters, such as air pressure and distribution of grain sizes, on the insulating performance of this material.

Copyright © 2009 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Grahic Jump Location
Figure 2

Apparent thermal conductivity versus air pressure for monolithic and granular samples

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 1

(a) Central cell of the thin-film-heater setup; (b) scheme of the resistance layer composing the hot film



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