Difference Between Sensible and Latent Heat (With Table)

There are different types of heat available in chemistry. Some can be felt by a human body, and some others cannot be felt. Learning them is very important as it will help in understanding the scientific changes that happen around us. There are two types of heat called sensible heat, and the other is called latent heat is available with differences. 

Sensible vs Latent Heat

The difference between Sensible and Latent Heat is that in a sensible heat, the temperature in that will either increase or decrease. In latent heat, the temperature change will be constant, and it will not change. Sensible heat has two types. In contrast, latent heat has three types. Sensible heat can be sensed. But latent heat cannot be sensed. 

Sensible heat is the heat that is measured by the human body. The heat which a human body can feel will fall under this category. In this sensible heat can be felt by the human body and checked with the thermometer. But nonsensible heat cannot be felt by a human body and cannot be checked with the help of a thermometer.

Latent heat is the heat that is measured with the help of a graph. This type of heat measurement is important for the source of energy that is in the development of hurricanes or thunderstorms. Latent heat is only a positive quantity. It cannot be negative. Only the latent heat of condensation and the fusion can be negative. Other than that, all others are positive.

Comparison Table Between Sensible and Latent Heat

Parameters of ComparisonSensible HeatLatent Heat
DefinitionThe temperature in the object will either increase or decreaseThe temperature in the object will not change and it is measured with help of a graph
Phase transitionIt is used for phase transitionIt is not used for phase transition
Energy changesThe internal energy of matterEnergy change between matter and surroundings
TemperatureThe temperature will keep on changingConstant
Phase changesSolid, liquid, and gasThey don’t have any phase changes

What is Sensible Heat?

When we heat an object, the temperature in that object will get raised. This is what we call sensible heat. Similarly, when we remove heat from an object, the temperature in that object will fall. This type of process is also called sensible heat. So the change in the heat caused is called sensible heat. Here the energy released during the change in the temperature is also taken into account. 

Sensible heat is the amount of heat that is registered on our thermostat. This thermostat will reflect a temperature change. So, the amount of energy that is increased or decreased is taken into consideration. This type of heat can be felt by a human body. Any kind of heat that we feel in our human body is called Sensible heat. The energy in this will be moved from one system to another system. For example, if we add water to the vessel, the temperature in that water will increase.

After some time, when we keep the water cool down, the temperature in that will decrease. There are even two different types of sensible heat available. They are called sensible heat and non-sensible heat. A sensible heat means you can measure either the gain or loss with the help of a thermometer. A non-sensible heat means the temperature in that will decrease, and you cannot measure it using a thermometer.

What is Latent Heat?

It is the amount of energy that is either absorbed or released during the change that happens in a physical state. This type of change will occur without changing its temperature. Latent heat is normally measured in terms of units, that is, by using joules or calories. This is expressed in terms of the amount of heat. 

This type of heat will change depending upon the type of state, such as solid, liquid, and gas. Also, it will differ among different types of liquids. For example, if the amount needed for the conversion of 1kg of a liquid at the boiling point is at the same gas temperature. There are three types of latent heat available. They are differed by fusion, vaporization, and sublimation. Latent heat cannot be felt with a normal human body.

We can measure it with the help of a graph which is either cooling or heating. For this, we need a heater to mature the latent heat. With the help of that, we can draw a graph which will then give the latent heat. Latent heat can also be measured at the steam of the atmospheric pressure. This is again calculated with kilojoules or kilograms. Latent heat can also be measured with evaporated or melted water. 

Main Differences Between Sensible and Latent Heat

  1. Sensible heat can be felt by a normal human body. On the other hand, latent heat cannot be felt by a human body.
  2. There are two types of sensible heat available. But there are three types of latent heat available.
  3. The energy change used in sensible heat is internal. On the other hand, the energy change used in latent heat is between matter and surroundings.
  4. The temperature in sensible heat will change. But the temperature in latent heat is constant. 
  5. Sensible heat will have phase changes. On the other hand, latent heat will not have any phase changes.

Conclusion

Both these heats are studied under the subject of chemistry. This is taught to school students so that they will understand the difference that lies between them. This latent heat will require formula and a graph to measure its change. For that, we need to have some basic understanding of mathematics calculations. Also, they will have units to measure them.

Since sensible heat can be felt by a normal human body, it is easier to explain them to students using day-to-day life examples so that they can easily understand the difference between them. The most commonly used example to explain sensible heat is with the example of boiling water which will be easier to understand. 

References

  1. https://rmets.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/joc.1112
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960148106001121
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2D vs 3D