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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“This is not a perpetual motion machine, because reservoir temperatures are changing.” Is it a valid argument?

I've already faced this situation several times: given a statement (in area of thermodynamics) I used it to provide an example of some perpetual motion machine (of first or second kind). Therefore, I ...
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57 views

Temperature measurement, precision

I am having problems with one of the problems I have done (a) which is basically $\theta = 273.16K (19/15) = 346.00K$ For (b) I am given that the length is 15.00cm when the thermometer is incontact ...
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42 views

What is the fluid approximation for BCS action?

For a system with free fermion gas at finite density (i.e. free Dirac action), we have an ideal fluid description with rho, p, n. What is the fluid description for BCS action? Suppose we have a box ...
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201 views

Centrifugal Compressor Flow Rate

For a centrifugal compressor, as found in most turbochargers on internal combustion engines, is there a noticeable change in flow rate versus a naturally aspirated flow rate? In other words, does the ...
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294 views

Is the $mL_c$ value for triangular and rectangular fins the same value?

I am looking at the solutions that my professor put up and I feel that he did something wrong. Here is the question and I will give my stab at the solution so you can see why I think that it is wrong. ...
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346 views

How equivalent are heat energy and work energy in connection with a spinning flywheel?

Let's say we have two identical spinning flywheels, that have arbitrary geometry, and are made of copper. Now we apply some heat energy at the center point of flywheel A, causing it to slow down a ...
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61 views

How many times brighter could the stars shine without raising the temperature of space?

If my understanding is correct, the temperature of space (as defined by the temperature that a black-body will reach) has been decreasing since the big bang. It has never increased. Additionally, ...
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467 views

Do the properties of two streams flowing into an engine add together when they mix?

Let's say I have two stream supplys that have separate mass flow rates, enthalpies, and velocities that flow into an engine. Upstream of the engine's inlet, the two streams mix to form one stream that ...
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88 views

How to compute the heat flow for a specific material for some given boundary temperature?

Assume I have a bounded material with heat sources inside. The material is known (i.e. I know heat capacity and all relevant data) and the temperature of the boundary is fixed. I solved the (steady ...
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24 views

Proving $RTln(a_i)$ equal to non PV work done by system,where $a_i$ is activity

First of all many here will might say that it is Chemistry question.If you think so then read this article and then answer question. Question is --- We know chemical potential is defined as $\mu_i ...
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34 views

Chemical potential of photons

Why do photons have zero chemical potential and what is its the physical significance? From what I know the chemical potential could be interpreted as the energy per unit particle that is put into a ...
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23 views

Natural refrigeration

I have an electricity-free pot-in-pot refrigerator that uses evaporative cooling to keep the inside cool. However, I live in a very humid place, so the rate of evaporation will be low and hence this ...
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28 views

Question regarding temperature as a property of a system

This is probably silly question but I got stuck while reading “Lectures on Theoretical Physics-Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics” by Sommerfeld. In the first chapter it says : Temperature ...
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34 views

Thermodynamics First Law Question - Expansions

Two thermally iso- lated cylinders, A and B, of equal volume, both equipped with pistons, are connected by a valve. Initially A has its piston fully withdrawn and contains a monatomic gas at ...
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31 views

Adiabatic Expansion with expanding control volume

I have a tube with a length "L" and diameter "d" that is open on 1 side . At a certain point ( say "x" ) from the closed end of the tube, I have a gas with a high pressure. At this point, "x", there ...
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44 views

Physical meaning of isobaric line in T-v diagram

Hi, I was just reviewing some slides from my thermodynamics class, and in one of the slides the professor asks what is the "physical meaning of the slopes" of the isobaric line in a T-v diagram. ...
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29 views

Explain Heat Transfer

I would like to know what are these formulas used for. There is no intro about it in my book at all, and I am reading Heat Transfer book. If needed Q. can be edited.
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30 views

Determine pipe outlet temperature without length?

Let's say I am flowing a fluid through a pipe that has a constant surface temperature. Is it possible to determine the heat flux on the inner surface without knowing the pipe's length when the only ...
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18 views

Applied / environmental question: direction of exhaust fumes

I'm not sure the Physics StackExchange is the perfect place for this environmental/applied physics question, but as I found no forum more fitting I ask my question here. Otherwise please move my ...
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20 views

How hot is it on the slopes of an erupting volcano?

I was watching The Return of the King and just after Frodo and Sam destroy the One Ring, they run out of the mountain and hide on top of a rock as the volcano erupts and lava flows past them. Is this ...
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25 views

where i can find thermodynamics properties of octane

where can I find thermodynamics properties for octane at $T_s$? I need this properties or where can i find all ? $$liquid-density=\rho_l=?$$ $$vapor-density=\rho_v=?$$ ...
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16 views

Building a magnetron powered steamer

I am wanting to build a microwave powered steamer for a reverse engineering project in university. I've read up some on this and know that its not as efficient as a heating element. I'm curious about ...
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65 views

Questions about the second law of thermodynamics

I can not understand the second law of thermodynamics and have trouble explaining the following questions: 1) In the tropics the water near the ocean surface is warmer than the deep water. Does the ...
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32 views

Convective heat transfer coefficient for counter-current flow

This is not a counter-current heat exchanger. It is two phases, Gas and Water, flow in one flow path but in opposite direction. I have found many source doing analysis on flow pattern of the ...
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41 views

How to calculate fluid's temperature change in a pump?

To calculate the pressure at the outlet of a pump we use pump performance characteristics i.e. charts giving pump head as a function of volumetric flow. When the fluid flows through a pump, it's ...
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34 views

Standard Heat of Combustion

When considering tabulated standard values of heat of combustion (∆H° combustion) or any other similar value, the results are reported for species in their standard states (1 bar pressure, 25°C, etc). ...
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32 views

Minimizing Availability vs. Maximizing Entropy

What is the conceptual difference between minimizing the availability of a thermodynamic system and maximizing the entropy of a thermodynamic system? I am under the impression that these are the same ...
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68 views

Caculating thermal stresses in a composite rod

The Question Between two rigid walls separated by a distance $l_1+l_2$, two rods of equal cross-section area $A$, and length, coefficient of linear expansion and Young's modulus $l_1, ...
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21 views

Finding out the temperature difference

If we add 10 spherical bubbles then there will be some change in their area. Is there any way to find out change in temperature of the liquid from the change of its area?
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33 views

Spin version of Maxwell's demon: Where's the energy?

I have confused myself about the following variant of Maxwell's demon and I can't seem to find out where the energy went. Consider this: You have a chain (one dimension) of spins (up/down) with a ...
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42 views

Heat transfer in a cylinder with two insulators

I'm used to problems which ask me to find the heat transfer when, for example I have a very long cylinder covered with an insulator, each with their respective conductivity coefficient. I'd use the ...
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81 views

calculating heating effect of coil submerged in hotwater tank

i would like to estimate the temperature increase of water passing through a heating coil submerged in a hotwater tank, i know the cold flow and temperature and the temperature in the tank, as well ...
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159 views

Ultra-Relativistic Fermi Gas - Chemical Potential and Energy

I tried deriving the expression for chemical potential of a Relativistic Fermi Gas using asymptotic expansion (for large z) in : $$ N = \frac{V}{h^3}4\pi (KT)^3g_s \int \frac{p^2 dp}{e^{p-\nu}+1} $$ ...
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63 views

How to do Legendre transformations on a S=S(U,V) P,V,T system?

Problem: For a $P,V,T$ system with constant mass,entropy can be considered a function of $U,V$, i.e. $S=S(U,V)$. The goal is to derive the rest of the thermodynamic functions via Legendre ...
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84 views

Find state equation given cubic expansion and isothermal compressibility coefficients

Context: I'm studying basic thermodynamics. Since I'm not confident that I translate the terms correctly, let me define the following coefficients mathematically: \begin{equation} \beta = ...
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27 views

Transient conduction - Biot number with irradiation?

I understand that the Biot number is essentially the ratio of the convective effects to the conductive effects in transient conduction but what if there is some sort of radiation from a heat source ...
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33 views

When heat is rejected by a system what will be $q$ according to sign convention?

When a system rejects heat it can be assumed that work is done by the system. So as per law the sign convention must be negative. But my physics textbook says the reverse. So is the question.
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39 views

(Iso-baric / iso-choric) Thermodynamic cycle question

A very simply question: Is something that even somewhat resemble a thermodynamic cycle consisting of two iso-baric and two iso-choric cycles possible (such that you get a simple rectangle representing ...
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16 views

Work of an adiabatic/ compresion: sign?

As far as I am concerned the adiabatic work it is given by: $$ W_{adi}=\frac{P_{f}V_{f}-P_{i}V_{i}}{\gamma -1}$$ While I have seen in other examples that it is used with $1-\gamma$ in the ...
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61 views

Is the thermal time constant simply the heat capacity divided by thermal conductivity?

My professor gave me this temperature decay data to make an exponential fit and told me that the time constant tau should be heat capacity over thermal conductivity. I'm looking at the wikipedia page ...
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33 views

What creates black streams in fountain-type fireworks?

For the New Year celebration of 2014, my nephews set off a series of fountain-type fireworks (as shown below). When one looks carefully into the shower of light, one notices that a fair number of ...
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36 views

How does pressurized gas constantly push?

If a gas, such as hydrogen, is pressurized into an air tight container, a force in terms of pascals (or whatever unit you want to use) is exerted, correct? That is what pushes against every surface ...
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42 views

Can I make a cold air trap (thermal equilibrium)

Thermodynamic buoyancy. I have an air intake for combustion air entering into a basement furnace room. During cold weather, the air enters unchecked (no damper on pipe is allowed). I have this 5 ...
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43 views

Equilibrium Condition

In classical thermodynamics, equilibrium conditions means maximum entropy for a closed state. However, people always talk about equilibrium for open systems as well. How can one say that an open ...
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43 views

NPT simulations: what is the inertia of volume fluctuations (using periodic boundary conditions)?

NPT molecular dynamics (MD) are most often implemented by adding some kind of piston that regulates the pressure. The inertia of this piston determines the dynamics of volume fluctuations in the ...
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63 views

How does this Stirling engine work?

I'm looking at this Stirling engine, which I believe is a variation of an alpha type. It was developed by Nasa back in the 1980's. The thing is, I can't figure out how the hydrogen cycles through the ...
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22 views

Radiant barrier effect on inside of a hot water tank

I am trying to determine if a radiant barrier on the inside of a hot water tank would increase its insulating value. Normally radiant barriers are used in house construction to reduce heat loss by ...
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46 views

Would a cone shaped Stirling engine work?

A Stirling engine evidently functions by heating and cooling air, thus making the piston move up and down. What if the heated side of the cylinder were shaped as a sort of cone with a gentle slope, ...
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17 views

Is using water in a charcoal smoker less efficient than not using water?

I have a charcoal smoker that uses water. My understanding is that the water serves as a buffer and as a way to add moisture to the cooking environment. Some say that using water wastes fuel because ...
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41 views

Rijke tube: Why Sound is maximum when heated 1/4th length from bottom of tube

Why is it that the maximum sound coming from a Rijke tube happens only when heated wire gauze is placed at 1/4th the length of the tube from the bottom. According to Rayleigh: If heat be ...