The coefficient of thermal expansion or CTE is the fractional increase or decrease in length per unit of rise or fall in temperature. The equation that accompanies this is the following:

∆V/V0 V ∆T

Where, ∆V and V0 represent the change in volume and αV represents the volume coefficient of thermal expansion. This coefficient is only applicable if the volume is isotropic or in other words is not varying in magnitude according to the direction of measurement. The ∆T symbol in the equation represents the change in temperature. Most materials experience a physical change in expansion or contraction with an increase or decrease in temperature. When designing…

  • Buildings
  • Aircraft
  • Boats
  • Bridges
  • Lights or other Outdoor fixtures

Unplanned expansion or contraction can be problematic and can result in product failures. Physical testing for thermal expansion/ contraction can be used to aid in preventing design flaws and in diagnosing the cause of failure for existing products.


Related Standards

  • ASTM
  • CE
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • European Union
  • Food & Drug Administration
  • ICH Q3D
  • International Council for Harmonisation
  • International Organization for Standardization

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