You are watching: Why do metals often make good conductors?
This equation was generalized for any situation involving electrical conductivity (including ion conduction), yet in most situations the fee carrier is just electrons.
So conductivity is basically just how many electrons have the right to squeeze through the wire in a provided amount the time., the mobility that electrons. Because that example, grain boundaries can scatter electrons, reducing the rate they travel with the wire. Precipitates and also alloying elements reduce conductivity because that the very same reason.
Some examples of high and low conductivity metals are offered in the table below.
|Top 5 steels with the highestelectrical conductivity||Conductivity σ x 106 in ~ 20°C (S/m)|
|Top 5 metals with the lowestelectrical conductivity||Conductivity σ x 106 at 20°C (S/m)|
Electrical Conductivity of metals vs Temperature
The opposite of conductivity is resistivity (or resistance). Resistivity is the intrinsic version of resistance.
As temperature rises metals increase in resistivity (or to decrease in conductivity).. Yet in semiconductors, higher thermal energy method more electrons have the right to pass indigenous the valence tape to the conduction band. Therefore while mu to reduce slightly, n boosts a lot!
you observed that this sea of electrons offers metals a very big n value, due to the fact that there room lots of cost-free electrons. You also learned how designers can influence the conductivity of a steel by an altering the electron mobility.
Finally, you learned why water “conducts” power even though it’s no a metal!
I hope this article has answered all her questions about electrical conductivity in metals!
References and also Further Reading
If she interested in metals, friend may additionally enjoy mine complete article that explains alloys.
This page was our source for the graph of resistivity vs temperature.
See more: 1/2 Cup Flour Calories In 1 1/2 Cups Of White Flour And Nutrition Facts
If you interested in applications the high-conducting materials, Oxygen-Free Copper is very pure and conducts well. You have the right to read around some applications that OFE copper here.