Take the 2-minute tour ×
Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I am currently working on the measurement of the coefficient of thermal expansion of copper. In order to compare my experimental results with theory or experiments made by others, I am looking for abacus or theoretical curves showing the latter coefficient (as a function of temperature).

The range of temperature I'm working with is 298K-500K.

Has anyone ever seen such data ? If so, are they easily available ? Anyway, I'm interested with any kind of data (easily available or not).

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

Depending on the what level of precision you need for your experiment, you may need to distinguish the grade of copper that you are using to conduct the experiment. Pure, oxygen-free copper are usually used for high vacuum environments, and thermoexpansion curves for those can be found - I found one from UCSD at http://aries.ucsd.edu/LIB/PROPS/PANOS/cu.html. The graph for thermoexpansion (the one at the bottom of the page) is fairly crude. But the data set in the table above is more complete. You can probably plot it out yourself and make a nicer graph.

However, the copper that you are using is probably a copper-nickle alloy, and according to this paper, http://nvlpubs.nist.gov/nistpubs/jres/39/jresv39n5p419_A1b.pdf, you can get very different expansion coefficients for various alloying percentages. (It seems that these differences are on the order of the differences caused by temperature changes)

If you are doing this for a high-school report, you don't have to worry too much, as long as you state in your conclusions that discrepancies may be caused by alloying species. If you are doing these calculations for precise applications, you may want to consider finding out the grade of copper. The graphs for specific grades are usually harder to find (I didn't have any luck after a quick search)

share|improve this answer
    
I am working with 99.9% pure copper. Thank you for your answer. I also found this webpage. –  ChocoPouce Jun 28 '13 at 7:35

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.