Covers the study of (mostly homogeneous) macroscopic systems from a heat/energy/entropy point of view. Maybe combine with [tag:statistical-mechanics].

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What are the physics challenges of rain farming [closed]

Rain farming is an engineering concept, employing the technology of industrial cooling towers, to deliver vast amounts of water to the lower levels of the troposphere as warm moist air. This question ...
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0answers
105 views

Second derivative of vapor pressure from a cubic equation of state

It is quite easy to compute the first derivative of vapor pressure with respect to temperature from a cubic equation of state at least at the critical point since there is a continuity with the ...
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1answer
87 views

Entropy with infinite baths

I'm struggling with the following problem: (Stephen J. Blundell, Concepts in Thermal Physics S. 154 Problem 14.5): A block of lead of heat capacity 1kJ/K is cooled from 200K to 100K in two ...
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120 views

Trace of the number operator in second quantization

I would like to find the helmholtz free energy of a system $F=-T ln(Tr[e^{\frac{-H}{T}}])$ namely a bcs superconductor (using Annett's notation) $H=\sum E_k (b_{k\uparrow}^\dagger ...
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210 views

How does Landauer's Principle apply in quantum (and generally reversible) computing

I understand that a reversible computer does not dissipate heat through the Landauer's principle whilst running - the memory state at all times is a bijective function of the state at any other time. ...
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25 views

Can I usefully interpret a non-unital completely positive (CP) map as a cooling process?

Non-unital completely positive (CP) maps take a maximally mixed quantum state (aka a normalized identity matrix aka an infinite temperature state) and map it to something else. This necessarily ...
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259 views

Theoretical or experimental violations of the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics? [closed]

Theoretical challenges to the 2nd Law? What are some the theoretical challenges to the 2nd Law? (cf. Čápek, Vladislav, and Daniel P. Sheehan. Challenges to the Second Law of Thermodynamics: Theory ...
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3answers
195 views

What limits the mass transfer from a boiler to a condenser in a sealed vessel?

If we set up an evacuated vessel where we keep one end at a higher temperature than the other, and then introduce a liquid at the warm end, it will evaporate and condense at the cooler end. If we trap ...
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74 views

commutator to entropy in an uncertainty relationship?

Question: Does there exist a commutator to entropy in an uncertainty relationship? Similar Energy and time for instance.
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102 views

Heat equation with Neumann boundary conditions

I would like to explore some ideas with different geometries exchanging energy mainly by radiation. This means solving Laplace equation for the steady state. However the boundary conditions are always ...
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0answers
60 views

Is there a source that provides data for the temperature coefficient of resistivity at different temperatures?

I'm looking for a source where I can find the temperature coefficient of resistivity at different temperatures for pure metals. Tables are everywhere for 20$\,^{\circ}$C, but I'm having difficulties ...
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51 views

What's the domain of usability of these two expressions for entropy

$$dS=\frac{dQ}{T}$$ $$S=k\ln \Omega$$ What assumptions are being made about the system/process that allow for using those expressions?
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78 views

Why does the water diffuse at right angles in my coffee? [closed]

I purchase an espresso shot each morning at my local coffee shop, and I usually water it down slightly to take the edge off as well as to cool it. Recently, I have noticed that when I pour the cold ...
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0answers
102 views

How long would it take for a container in vacuum to leak half of its air? [closed]

Let's say I know the size of the container, size of the hole the air leaks through, pressure the air is under and temperature of the air if that helps anything. Is it possible to calculate this only ...
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0answers
83 views

Can one get clear ice crystals from a dirty suspension?

Euteictic freeze crystallization is a method where an electrolytic solution is cooled and separated into a stream of (relativly) clean, pure ice and a salty brine. I know anectdotally of wine ...
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0answers
110 views

Calculate how hot PLA will become

I am trying to attach the shaft of a brass heating tip to a PLA component. My problem is that the tip will have to reach a temperature of about 200°C and the PLA can only handle a temperature of about ...
2
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1answer
328 views

What defines the adiabatic flame temperature?

What defines the adiabatic flame temperature? In a case I have to solve, I need to describe the combustion of natural gas (Groningen natural gas, to be specific). However, I am having some problems ...
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2answers
188 views

Does the black body emit more than any other type of body?

I found this on Wikipedia article on black bodies: A black body in thermal equilibrium (that is, at a constant temperature) emits electromagnetic radiation called black-body radiation. The ...
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0answers
46 views

Interface condition for heat exchange

I would like to compute the heat distribution of a piece of metal with some surrounding material. The heat is assumed to propagate by diffusion, so inside the metal piece and also on the outside, the ...
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0answers
119 views

Will humid air mitigate airborn dust due to neutralization of static electricity?

I have came to understand that humid air will help prevent electrostatic forces that can propel dust and cause it to cling to surfaces. My first question: is this above statement true? If the answer ...
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1answer
237 views

The definition of entropy

As history of thermodynamics say, it was a mystery that what is the required condition for a given energy conversion to take place? Like there are two possible events each conserving energy but only ...
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0answers
61 views

In a non-degenerate plasma, why are e-e collision negligible compared to e-ion for thermal conduction?

I'm trying to make some order of magnitude estimates of heat transfer in stars - to better understand 1) why conduction is said to be negligible (for non-degenerate matter) and 2) when convection ...
2
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1answer
553 views

Physics-based derivation of the formula for entropy [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Proof of $S=-\sum p\ln p$? I am looking for a derivation of the formula $$S~=~-\Sigma_ip_i \log (p_i).$$ for entropy, from first principles. I only wish to assume the ...
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2answers
296 views

Convergance of a system to Boltzmann distribution

Consider a system with finite-dimension state X and energy E(X), with dynamics which follow the Langevin equation $\frac{dX}{dt}=-\nabla_X{E(X)}+\eta(t)$ where $\eta$ is white noise ...
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82 views

Temperature of the CMB when the Earth formed and the faint young Sun paradox

The cosmic microwave background (CMB) has a modern temperature of about 2.7 K. At the time of the origin of the CMB, about 13.6 billion years ago, it had a temperature of about 3000 K. ...
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148 views

Dissipation when the temperature is not constant

Consider a process where some chemical species diffuses from one part of a system (which I'll call $A$) to another ($B$) at a rate $r$ $\text{mol}\cdot \mathrm s^{-1}$. If the system's temperature is ...
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1answer
1k views

Finding electric power generated using heat transfer

I'm working through an example I have been given to study. Suppose I have a 2m X 4m photovoltaic panel on my roof that is irradiated with a solar flux of $G_s = 700W/m^2$. Given: $\alpha_s = 0.83$ ...
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1answer
73 views

Is there an abstract notion of heat within a microscopical system?

The microstates of a system are said to be unobservable. I can introduce the entropy as a measure of the number of microstates, which lead to the same macroscopic variables. So in this detailed ...
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1answer
104 views

How can I calculate the amount of bubbles needed to lift a submerged body?

Our teacher had us come up with our own thermodynamics experiments, so I put a glass of water inside a vacuum-capsule. Inside the glass of water I have placed a non-floating object, a small plastic ...
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1k views

When do I know if energy stored in an object is 0 or nonzero? (Heat transfer)

There is uniform internal heat generation at $\dot{q}=5\times10^{7} \frac{W}{m^{3}}$ is occurring in a cylindrical nuclear reactor fuel rod of 50 mm diameter and under steady state conditions the ...
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1k views

What are typical values of the critical thickness of insulation?

As most people who've had any elementary heat transfer course are aware, when insulating a pipe, wire, etc, there is a critical thickness for the insulation below which it causes greater heat transfer ...
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0answers
424 views

Heat equation and Bessel's function [closed]

Could someone please explain why if the time-independent heat equation can, via changing of variables, take the form of Bessel's equation that the $\sqrt\lambda$ should take the values of the zeros of ...
2
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3answers
469 views

Finite difference formulation of the heat equation with thermal conductivity in 1D

This may seem trivial, but I'm having some trouble deriving the finite difference form of the heat equation with a thermal conductivity function $a(x)$ depending on $x$: $$\frac{\partial u(x, ...
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303 views

Maxwell's Demon - laser cooling

There’s an interesting article on Scientific American that tells how to cool individual atoms to within a very tiny fraction of Absolute Zero. It uses two laser beams acting on a very cold rarified ...
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1answer
499 views

Maximum pressure at a compressor outlet and molecular weight

I am puzzled by some data I see for a compressor. From what I read, the maximum discharge pressure reachable with a reciprocal compressor would vary depending on the nature of the gas used, and its ...
2
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4answers
33k views

Heat transfer calculated from the specific heat formula

Say I have 10g of silver, whose specific heat is known to be 0.235. I've heated it up from 50.0C to 60.0C. How much heat has been transferred? The equation is: $$ Q = C_pm\Delta t $$ where Cp is ...
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5answers
207 views

Normal distribution of x, xdot

I have some real measurements from a process and I happened to look at the mutual distribution of (x(t), xdot(t)). I found that they seem to follow 2d normal distribution around (mu, 0). See image, ...
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3answers
764 views

Human as a heat engine

humans are heat engines. heat engines can't operate when the source and the sink are at the same temperatures and also if the temperature of the sink is higher than that of the source. in humans' ...
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4answers
400 views

Irreversible expansion and time reversal symmetry

Suppose there are N non-interacting classical particles in a box, so their state can be described by the $\{\mathbf{x}_i(t), \mathbf{p}_i(t) \}$. If the particles are initially at the left of the box, ...
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3answers
4k views

Does closing curtains 'make your home warmer'?

I mean, in the sense that the act of closing curtains would somehow reduce the amount of heat loss of the house to the outside, thus making it warmer for a given supply of heating.
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3answers
162 views

Is there any optical component that uniformizes the incoming light?

Is there any optical component in existence that uniformizes randomly pointing rays?
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2answers
566 views

How does blow-drying a mirror keep it from steaming up again?

After a hot shower, the mirror in my bathroom steams up. When I try to clear it with a towel, it immediately refogs. Yet once I use my hair-dryer, it will clear the fog and the mirror will stay clear. ...
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3answers
225 views

Water, can it break through temperature?

If water is heaten up to ridicilously high temperatures, is it possible for the atoms in the molecules to lose their bonds? And if it is possible, isn't this some kind of chain-reaction? Like you ...
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3answers
227 views

Thermal physics question, final temperature of ice and water

Here is the question from my textbook: "In an insulated vessel, 250g of ice at $0^{\circ}$C is added to 600g of water at $18^{\circ}$C. What is the final temperature of the system?" The solution ...
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3answers
374 views

Mathematical proof of non-negative change of entropy $\Delta S\geq0$

I understand that we can prove that for any process that occurs in an isolated and closed system it must hold that $$\Delta S\geq0$$ via Clausius' theorem. My question is, how can I prove this in a ...
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1answer
374 views

Confused about fire?

Im confused about fire. The way I see it : Heat creates (kinetic) energy in mass and this creates stronger vibrations of atoms. When those vibrations are strong enough the electrons interact ...
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1answer
1k views

Will adding cold water to a hot iron pan harm it? Why/why not?

Adding cold water to a aluminum pan can be harmful. Is this same with iron pan too? How can it be explained?
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2answers
530 views

Does the global financial system violate laws of thermodynamics and energy conservation? [closed]

For the past years I am thinking about relating concepts from physics to concepts from economics. Especially since the financial crisis made obvious the instability of the financial system I ask ...
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3answers
389 views

Problem with an electricity / thermodynamics assignment

I've been trying to figure this one out for a while on my own, so I'd like to ask for your help if you could offer some. The task states: A heater made out of a wire with a diameter $R = ...
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2answers
370 views

Restrictions on defining microstates (Entropy)

If we have an isolated system $Sb$ with thermodynamic entropy $Eb=X$ (and growing by the 2nd law of thermodynamics), we could define an abstract system $Sa$ (containing the system $Sb$) but define ...