Experimental Characterization and Model Verification of Thermal Conductivity from Mesoporous to Macroporous SiOC Ceramics


Based on the chemical cross-linking method, this paper uses polydimethylsiloxane with various viscosities of 10 cSt, 20 cSt, 50 cSt, and 100 cSt to synthesize mesoporous and macroporous SiOC ceramics. Their thermal conductivities are measured by using 3ω method with high accuracy. Three typical models for their thermal conductivities, i.e., series model (SM), maxwell-Eucken 1 model (ME1), and effective medium theory (EMT) model, are utilized to derive the empirical formula through the multi-parameter linear optimization algorithm, which agrees well with the experimental results. The effects of pore size and specific surface area on the overall thermal conductivity of the porous structure are explored. Interestingly, it is found that the thermal conductivities of both gas phase and solid phase inside the porous structure increase with the increasing pore size at the nanometer scale, but the overall thermal conductivity of the porous structure decreases with the increasing pore size. Scanning electron microscopy graphs corroborate that the extension of the heat transfer route and the barrier of more pores between the solid phases together cause the reduction of the gas-solid coupling thermal conductivity of SiOC ceramics with larger pore size. On the contrary, the miniaturization of individual particles through modulating the synthesis parameters can increase the number of small pores in the sample itself to meet the pseudo-lattice vibration conditions, which results in the increment of the gas-solid coupling thermal conductivity and the overall thermal conductivity of the porous structure. These findings would provide meaningful guidance for designing SiOC porous ceramic super-insulation materials with extremely low thermal conductivity.

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A :

specific surface area of SiOC/m2·g−1

d por :

median pore diameter

k :

thermal conductivity/W·m−1·K−1

l :

the solid phonon mean free path/nm

p :

gas pressure/Pa

r :

the radius of the solid particle/nm

S s :

specific surface area of sample/m2·kg−1

T :

gas temperature/K

V :

freestanding sensor’s voltage signal

v :

volume fraction

α CR :

temperature coefficient of resistance

θ :

freestanding sensor’s temperature rise/K

ρ :

the density/kg·m−3

ϕ :

the porosity




effective medium theory




fluid mass transfer




liquid phase


maxwell-Eucken 1


maxwell-Eucken 2




parallel model




series model






real part of the first harmonic


real part of the third harmonic


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This work is financially supported by Beijing Natural Science Foundation (3202020), National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 51876008), Beijing Nova Program (Z201100006820065) and Interdisciplinary Research Project for Young Teachers of USTB (Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities) (FRF-IDRY-19-004). WU Jin acknowledges financial support from Guangdong Natural Science Funds Grant (2018A030313400).

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Correspondence to Yanhui Feng or Jin Wu.

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Qiu, L., Du, Y., Bai, Y. et al. Experimental Characterization and Model Verification of Thermal Conductivity from Mesoporous to Macroporous SiOC Ceramics. J. Therm. Sci. (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11630-021-1422-7

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  • SiOC ceramics
  • macroporous media
  • 3ω method
  • thermal conductivity