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What specific features need to be kept in mind when thinking about temperature and CTE?

Finding reference tables containing the specific Coefficient of Thermal Expansion (CTE) for various materials is not difficult. However, there are two important features to remember about the principles of the effects of temperature on materials when utilizing these resources. First, there is no way to account for a guaranteed amount of uncertainty that is built into these tables. The original measurements used likely had a certain degree of human and machine error, and there is a natural discrepancy of CTE even between different pieces of the same material (even from the same manufacturer!). Second, the reference tables for CTE that you will find more often than not report a range of temperatures for which a specific CTE applies. This is somewhat unreliable should you be taking a measurement at a very precise temperature. While the CTE reference tables are a great resource, it is important to keep these warnings in mind when using the values for precision measurement.
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