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Sensitivity Analysis Affecting the Calibration of Heat-Flow-Meter Apparatus



Robert R. Zarr, Sergio A. Carvajal, James J. Filliben


Results and analysis of a sensitivity study of four procedural variables on the calibration response of two commercial heat-flow-meter apparatus in compliance with ASTM Test Method C 518 are presented. The apparatus ranged in plate size from 305 mm by 305 mm to 610 mm by 610 mm and were calibrated using Standard Reference Materials 1450c, Fibrous Glass Board, and 1453, Expanded Polystyrene Board, issued by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. A major objective of the study is to rank the relative importance of the factors and interactions affecting the calibration of the apparatus. Seventy-six runs were conducted under input conditions that varied the mean temperatures from 17 ° C to 30 °C, temperature differences from 17 K to 30 K, heat flow up or down across the specimen thickness, and different external bath coolant temperatures. For each apparatus and SRM, the test design followed a full factorial experimental design for the four factors that included three interspatial replicates to assess for temporal drift. The study revealed that mean temperature and heat flow direction were the two important test method factors affecting the calibration of both apparatus. Although the temperature effect was the same for both apparatus, the heat flow direction effect was found to be instrument dependent. The study also found that the calibration factor for each apparatus was affected by the reference material utilized for calibration. Empirically-derived predictive models for each apparatus and SRM are presented covering the experimental region defined by the input test conditions.
ASTM Journal of Testing and Evaluation


apparatus, calibration, expanded polystyrene board, experimental design, fibrous glass board, full factorial, heat flow meter, heat flux transducer, orthogonal, ruggedness, sensitivity, SRM, thermal insulation


Zarr, R. , Carvajal, S. and Filliben, J. (2019), Sensitivity Analysis Affecting the Calibration of Heat-Flow-Meter Apparatus, ASTM Journal of Testing and Evaluation, [online], (Accessed July 16, 2024)


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Created July 1, 2019, Updated May 31, 2020