## Convection Boundary Condition

In heat transfer problems, the convection boundary condition, known also as the **Newton boundary condition,** corresponds to the existence of convection heating (or cooling) at the surface and is obtained from the surface energy balance. **Convection boundary condition** is probably the most common boundary condition encountered in practice since most heat transfer surfaces are exposed to a convective environment at specified parameters.

In other words, this condition assumes that the heat conduction at the surface of the material is equal to the heat convection at the surface in the same direction. Since the boundary cannot store energy, the net heat entering the surface from convective side must leave the surface from the conduction side.

Similarly, the radiation boundary condition can be constructed and used.

## General Heat Conduction Equation

The **heat conduction equation** is a partial differential equation that describes the distribution of **heat** (or the** temperature field**) in a given body over time. Detailed knowledge of the temperature field is very important in thermal conduction through materials. Once this temperature distribution is known, the **conduction heat flux** at any point in the material or on its surface may be computed from Fourier’s law.

The heat equation is **derived** from **Fourier’s law** and **conservation of energy**. The Fourier’s law states that the time **rate of heat transfer** through a material is **proportional to** the negative **gradient in the temperature** and to the area, at right angles to that gradient, through which the heat flows.

A change in internal energy per unit volume in the material, ΔQ, is proportional to the change in temperature, Δu. That is:

**∆Q = ρ.c**_{p}**.∆T**

**General Form**

Using these two equation we can derive the general heat conduction equation:

This equation is also known as the **Fourier-Biot equation**, and provides the basic tool for heat conduction analysis. From its solution, we can obtain the temperature field as a function of time.

In words, the **heat conduction equation** states that:

*At any point in the medium the net rate of energy transfer by conduction into a unit volume plus the volumetric rate of thermal energy generation must equal the rate of change of thermal energy stored within the volume.*

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