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## heat capacity

heat capacity or thermal capacity, ratio of the change in heat energy of a unit mass of a substance to the change in temperature of the substance; like its melting point or boiling point, the heat capacity is a characteristic of a substance. The measurement of heat and heat capacity is called calorimetry. In the metric system, heat capacity is often expressed in units of calories per gram per degree Celsius (cal/g-°C); in the English system, British thermal units per pound per degree Fahrenheit (Btu/lb-°F) are often used. Because of the definitions of the calorie and Btu, these two heat capacity units are equivalent; the heat capacity of pure water is 1 cal/g-°C and 1 Btu/lb-°F. Other units are used also; for example, the heat capacity of pure water is 4.184 joules/g-°C and 1.16x10-6 kilowatt-hours/g-°C. The heat capacity of a system such as a calorimeter refers to the ratio of the change in heat energy of the system as a whole to the change in its temperature and is expressed in such units as calories per degree Celsius. See also specific heat.

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"heat capacity." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 11 Dec. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"heat capacity." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 11, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/heat-capacity

"heat capacity." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved December 11, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/heat-capacity

## heat capacity

heat capacity (thermal capacity) Ratio of the heat supplied to an object to the rise in its temperature. It is measured in joules/kelvin. See also specific heat capacity

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"heat capacity." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 11 Dec. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"heat capacity." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (December 11, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/heat-capacity

"heat capacity." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved December 11, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/heat-capacity

## heat capacity

heat capacity The energy required to increase the temperature of a given mass of material by one degree Celsius.