Understanding Specific Heat Capacity: idea of Specific Heat Capacity

Understanding Specific Heat Capacity

Heat Capacity

1. The heat capacity,C , of a substance is the heat which is required to increase the temperature of the substance by 1°C.

2. The unit for heat capacity is J° / C.

3. For example, the heat capacity for 100 g of water is 420 J°/ C. This means that 420 J of heat energy is required to raise the temperature of 100 g water by 1°C. To increase temperature by 2°C, 840 J are needed and so on.

4. Different substance, materials or body has different specific heat capacity.

5. If a body absorbs a lot of heat but there is only a slight increase in temperature, then the body is said to posses a large heat capacity.

6. On the other hand, if a body absorbs a little amount of heat but shows a big rise in temperature, then the body is said to posses a small heat capacity.

7. The relationship between heat capacity, C and specific heat capacity, c is shown by the following equation.

C = mc

Specific Heat Capacity

1. Specific heat capacity, c, of a body is the heat that is needed to increase the heat of a unit of mass or the substance by 1°C or 1K.

2. The unit of specific heat capacity is J kg-1°C-1.

3. For example, the specific heat capacity of water is 4200 J kg-1°C-1 . This means that 4200 J of heat is needed to increase the temperature of 1 Kg of water by 1°C.

4. Therefore, when a body of a mass m and specific heat capacity, c, absorbs a quantity of Heat, H, then its heat will increase by θ.

5. Therefore H = mc θ.

6. On the contrary, when the heat of a body falls by θ, the quantity of heat that disappears or lost is also H = mc θ.

7. The specific heat capacity is dependent upon the type of substances. Different substances have different specific heat capacity.

8. By knowing the specific heat capacity, we can determine the mass and also the change of temperature of a body if we know the amount of heat that is transferred.

9. Total heat transferred H = mc θ.

10. Generally, liquid has more specific heat capacity than solids. This means that liquids need more heat energy than solids to show the same value of rise in temperature.

Hope this helps!

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