Thermal & Electrical

Conductivity Explained

Thermal conductivity - TC

Thermal conductivity is the measure of the ability of a material to conduct heat. Materials of a high thermal conductivity are widely used in heat sink applications. Materials of a low thermal conductivity are used as thermal insulators. Thermal conductivity is measured in: watts per metre-kelvin. (W/mK)

At Permabond we use a C-Therm TCi machine which is configured with a Modified Transient Plane Source (MTPS) sensor. This factory-calibrated machine measures conductivity and effusivity with the highest precision

Epoxies are classed as insulators as are other materials withTC less than 1 W/mK. We use additives such as aluminium oxide to increase the TC to between 1-2 W/mK which is deemed to be a good conductivity value, more expensive additives such as metals will increase the TC to values approaching 10 W/mK which is exceptional.

Electrical Conductivity - EC

Electrical conductivity (resistance) is the measure of the amount of electrical current a material can carry (or it's ability to carry current) Electrical current is measured in: Ohms per centimetre (Ohm/cm)

To test and measure electrical conductivity or resistance, Permabond

use a multimeter. A low reading indicates the item being electrically conductive while a high reading demonstrates electrical resistance.


Epoxies are generally not electrically conductive, so we have to add metals such as silver or copper, to achieve excellent electrical conductivity. This makes them expensive for applications such as

bonding SMD's on electronic circuit boards. 

Permabond offer a range of adhesives which have been formulated to offer maximum thermal conductivity properties as well as some which reach UL94 V-0 fire retardancy requirements.

Below is a flyer on our thermally conductive range plus a table of just some of our

thermally conductive products.

Click here for our
Thermally Conductive flyer

*Please note higher thermal conductivity is always available subject to

minimum order quantities.