Uses of Thermal Insulators

by Shannon Johnson ; Updated September 28, 2017

An insulator is a certain material that is installed to reduce the rate of heat transfer from an object to the outside elements. Changes in the seasons and temperatures can require various thermal insulators in order to keep heat from escaping specific structures. The most efficient way to keep anything warm is to preserve the heat that is already present, by slowing down the rate at which it is lost.

Thermal Insulation for Buildings

According to ASTM International (formerly the American Society for Testing and Materials), thermal insulation is one of the most used forms of insulation for businesses and homes. The intent of thermal insulation is to decrease the rate at which heat is transferred from the interior to the exterior of a building. In order to contain heat as long as possible, thermal insulation is installed in the roof and walls of a building. The ATSM has specific standards set in place for the quality of thermal insulation that is available for use. The thermal insulation standards incorporate the most current studies and tests that have been conducted regarding conductive, convective and radiative properties of insulation, to ensure that only the best products are being used.

Thermal Insulated Clothing

The Tractor Supply website explains that thermal-insulated clothing is designed to keep an individual as warm as possible during the cold winter months. Thermal-insulated jackets, pants, and coveralls are designed to slow the rate of heat loss, while still allowing the individual's skin to breathe adequately. Thermal-lined clothing allows individuals to spend substantial amounts of time outdoors, in the winter months, while staying safe and warm.

Thermal-Insulated Travel Mugs

Thermal-insulated travel mugs are designed to keep hot beverages warm for many hours in any environment. The inner portion of the mug contains thermal insulation that greatly reduces the rate of heat loss within the mug. The outer portion of a thermal travel mug can be stainless steel, plastic or ceramic. Although any of the materials will work, stainless steel is recommended, because it is strong and has additional insulating properties. Thermal travel mugs are convenient in the winter months or year round, because they allow an individual to enjoy a warm beverage in any location.

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About the Author

Shannon Johnson has been a freelance writer since 2008, specializing in health and organic and green-living topics. She practiced law for five years before moving on to work in higher education. She writes about what she lives on a daily basis.