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The comparison of MTDATA with the melting/freezing point curves of ITS-90 metal fixed points

Head, D I; Davies, H; Gray, J; Quested, P N (2008) The comparison of MTDATA with the melting/freezing point curves of ITS-90 metal fixed points. Int. J. Thermophysics, 29 (5). pp. 1796-1807.

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The International Temperature Scale (ITS-90) is defined in part by a series of metal freezing points between 156 °C and 1084 °C. These freezing point cells provide reference temperatures with an uncertainty of realisation claimed to be in the range of several tenths of a millikelvin. The impurities in the nominally 99.9999% pure metals make a major contribution to the uncertainty of realization of the fixed point temperature. Recently, a new method to correct for the influence of the impurities by summing the individual contributions of each impurity has been suggested. This method is referred to as the "Sum of Individual Estimates" (SIE). NPL is a partner in a Euromet project to improve the realisation of ITS-90 metal fixed points. As part of this project, NPL is particularly interested in the fixed-point cells of tin (231.928 °C) and aluminium (660.323 °C). This paper describes the use of a thermodynamic model, embodied in NPL's MTDATA software, to estimate the initial drop in the freezing temperature and the temperature decrease during freezing using both equilibrium and "Scheil" approaches. Calculations of this type establish the effect of single elements, and with the chemical analysis of the metal, enable an estimation of the whole freezing curve. We have done this for a sample of tin from our laboratory and thereafter compared our theoretical curves with previously published experimental data on impurity-doped aluminium, with good agreement, e.g. better than 1 mK over most of the curve for 76 mg/g Ag in Al.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Fixed Points, ITS-90, MTDATA, Purity
Subjects: Engineering Measurements
Engineering Measurements > Thermal
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2018 13:15
URI: http://eprintspublications.npl.co.uk/id/eprint/4263

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