Our research group is having a very difficult time locating anything about the thermal conductivity of $\ce{MgCO3}$. It is a pretty commonly mineral, so we were pretty surprised by this. Is any way to derive thermal conductivity from other properties of magnesium carbonate? (Magnesite)

  • $\begingroup$ Search for the thermal conductivity of magnesite. $\endgroup$ – aventurin May 5 '16 at 20:43
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    $\begingroup$ Thank you for your answer. We had been trying that, but all the sites that list the thermal conductivity of magnesite say that it is made mostly out of $\ce{MgO}$, not $\ce{MgCO3}$. (Example: brick, magnesite (mgo 87) thermtest.com/material-property-search) $\endgroup$ – sandaga May 5 '16 at 20:53

In the dissertation of K. Kratz (2006) the following values of thermal diffusivity along the crystallographic axes of magnesite are listed:

$D_{[001]} = 6.55 ~\mathrm{mm^2\,s^{-1}}$,
$D_{[100]} = 2.38 ~\mathrm{mm^2\,s^{-1}}$,
$D_{[010]} = 2.38 ~\mathrm{mm^2\,s^{-1}}$.

Ch. Clauser and E. Huenges, Thermal Conductivity of Rocks and Minerals lists the following values for the thermal conductivity of magnesite in the temperature range from 25-100°C:

$\lambda_{\perp} = 7.32 \pm 0.57 ~\mathrm{W m^{-1} K^{-1}}$
$\lambda_{\mid} = 7.86 \pm 0.17 ~\mathrm{W m^{-1} K^{-1}}$

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you! The references you have listed are great. I really appreciate it! $\endgroup$ – sandaga May 7 '16 at 6:11


at 25 celcius the thermal conductivity is 4.15 W/m/K

  • $\begingroup$ Thank you. How can we be sure that this refers to a brick made out of $\ce{MgCO3}$ and not $\ce{MgO}$? Most of the websites I have seen that list a similar thermal conductivity have been calling $\ce{MgO}$ bricks magnesite. (Example above). $\endgroup$ – sandaga May 5 '16 at 21:06

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