How good of a thermal insulator is superglue compared to other materials like ceramics, plastics, and metals?

I know this might not seem like a chemistry question, but I was hoping someone here could provide a more meaningful answer than what I found online, which was basically along the lines of, "It's not a good heat conductor so don't use it in cooling applications." I was hoping for a little more substance than that, so that's why I wanted to ask it on here.

Ideally, I would love for the answer to include one of the following things:

  • An approximate numeric comparison between superglue (liquid or gel) and other materials (for example plastics, metals, and ceramics).
  • Or a qualitative answer, like the example I gave above, but with a short explanation based on the chemical characteristics.
  • Or perhaps a chart of thermal conductivities of various superglues relative to other common materials.

If a similar question already exists -- or there is a free resource available online that can answer it -- then a link with a short explanation would be a perfectly good answer as well.


I know it sounds like I'm asking for a very big answer, but the suggested answers above were just suggestions. Really, the most important thing (for me at least) is to get a feel for where superglue falls in relation to other common materials.


In response to Greg's comment: I would have liked to share my finding on the subject, but unfortunately I have not been able to locate any formal research on the matter. The best I was able to find so far were forums and blog articles, which were usually either vague or offered little-to-no supporting evidence of their answers. Perhaps I just don't know the right places to look for information like this, and if this really is the case then I hope you all can give me some direction as to where I can find some research on this matter.

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    $\begingroup$ While it is not a homework type of question, it would help if you show how far you got on your own, what problems you faced. On one hand your question is very broad ("compare me all the materials! metals, ceramics, everything!") on the other hand you suggest you ask for great many details ("compare me all different superglues"). $\endgroup$ – Greg Aug 21 '14 at 6:12
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    $\begingroup$ Practically it makes no difference whether its conductivity is high or low as its so thin when applied and damn difficult to measure as its so thin. It is practically a plastic. $\endgroup$ – user2617804 Aug 21 '14 at 6:13
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    $\begingroup$ @Dissenter Yes, I completely agree that it's probabbly a fairly good heat conductor in its liquid state, but perhaps this might be more difficult than we imagine due to viscosity and layer thickness effects -- since very thin and viscus glue will not have as much molecular motion as thick or less-visid glue. In my case however, I would like to find out about only solid superglue since this is its most common state. $\endgroup$ – Vladimir Aug 21 '14 at 6:31
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    $\begingroup$ I just spent 30 minutes trying to find some number for the heat transfer coefficient of polycyanoacrylates. No luck there. It might be impossible to give an answer to this question without doing original research. $\endgroup$ – tschoppi Oct 17 '14 at 12:16
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    $\begingroup$ Thermally conductive transfer tapes by 3M have a heat transfer coefficient of 0.6 W/(K m). $\endgroup$ – tschoppi Oct 17 '14 at 12:19

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