Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 29, Issue 9, pp 2261–2273 | Cite as

An assessment of expressions for the apparent thermal conductivity of cellular materials

  • P. G. Collishaw
  • J. R. G. Evans


Diverse expressions for the thermal conductivity of cellular materials are reviewed. Most expressions address only the conductive contribution to heat transfer; some expressions also consider the radiative contribution. Convection is considered to be negligible for cell diameters less than 4 mm. The predicted results are compared with measured conductivities for materials ranging from fine-pore foams to coarse packaging materials. The dependencies of the predicted conductivities on the material parameters which are most open to intervention are presented graphically for the various models.


Polymer Heat Transfer Convection Thermal Conductivity Foam 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Absorption coefficient

Citv(J mol−1 K−1)

Specinc heat




Emissivity of hypothetical thin parallel layer


Boundary surfaces emissivity


Fraction of solid normal to heat flow


Fraction of total solid in struts of cell


Mean extinction coefficient

k(Wm−1 K−1)

Effective thermal conductivity of foam

kcd(Wm−1 K−1)

Conductive contribution

kcr(Wm−1 K−1)

Convertive contribution


Thermal conductivity of cell gas

kr(Wm−1 K−1)

Radiative contribution

ks(Wm−1 K−1)

Thermal conductivity of solid


Thickness of sample


Diameter of cell


Cell-wall thickness


Number of cell layers


Reflection coefficient


Transmission coefficient


Absolute temperature


Mean temperature


Fraction of energy passing through cell wall


Temperature of hot plate


Temperature of cold plate


Volume fraction of gas


Volume fraction of total solid in the windows


Refractive index


Effective molecular diameter

η(Pa s)

Gas viscosity


Structural angle with respect to rise direction

σ(Wm−2 K−4)

Stefan constant


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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. G. Collishaw
    • 1
  • J. R. G. Evans
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Materials TechnologyBrunel UniversityUxbridgeUK

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