Temperature - Examples of Temperature

Examples of Temperature

Temperature Peak emittance wavelength
of black-body radiation
Kelvin Degrees Celsius
Absolute zero
(precisely by definition)
0 K −273.15 °C cannot be defined
Coldest temperature
100 pK −273.149999999900 °C 29,000 km
Coldest Bose–Einstein
450 pK −273.14999999955 °C 6,400 km
One millikelvin
(precisely by definition)
0.001 K −273.149 °C 2.89777 m
(radio, FM band)
Water's triple point
(precisely by definition)
273.16 K 0.01 °C 10,608.3 nm
(long wavelength I.R.)
Water's boiling point 373.1339 K 99.9839 °C 7,766.03 nm
(mid wavelength I.R.)
Incandescent lamp 2500 K ≈2,200 °C 1,160 nm
(near infrared)
Sun's visible surface 5,778 K 5,505 °C 501.5 nm
(green-blue light)
Lightning bolt's
28 kK 28,000 °C 100 nm
(far ultraviolet light)
Sun's core 16 MK 16 million °C 0.18 nm (X-rays)
Thermonuclear weapon
(peak temperature)
350 MK 350 million °C 8.3×10−3 nm
(gamma rays)
Sandia National Labs'
Z machine
2 GK 2 billion °C 1.4×10−3 nm
(gamma rays)
Core of a high-mass
star on its last day
3 GK 3 billion °C 1×10−3 nm
(gamma rays)
Merging binary neutron
star system
350 GK 350 billion °C 8×10−6 nm
(gamma rays)
Relativistic Heavy
Ion Collider
1 TK 1 trillion °C 3×10−6 nm
(gamma rays)
CERN's proton vs
nucleus collisions
10 TK 10 trillion °C 3×10−7 nm
(gamma rays)
Universe 5.391×10−44 s
after the Big Bang
1.417×1032 K 1.417×1032 °C 1.616×10−26 nm
(Planck Length)
  • A For Vienna Standard Mean Ocean Water at one standard atmosphere (101.325 kPa) when calibrated strictly per the two-point definition of thermodynamic temperature.
  • B The 2500 K value is approximate. The 273.15 K difference between K and °C is rounded to 300 K to avoid false precision in the Celsius value.
  • C For a true black-body (which tungsten filaments are not). Tungsten filaments' emissivity is greater at shorter wavelengths, which makes them appear whiter.
  • D Effective photosphere temperature. The 273.15 K difference between K and °C is rounded to 273 K to avoid false precision in the Celsius value.
  • E The 273.15 K difference between K and °C is without the precision of these values.
  • F For a true black-body (which the plasma was not). The Z machine's dominant emission originated from 40 MK electrons (soft x–ray emissions) within the plasma.

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