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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18
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2answers
492 views

Why aren't gas planets and stars fuzzy? [duplicate]

The edge of Jupiter looks very sharp. Even more bothersome, the edge of the sun looks sharp, aside from kind of a soup of particles floating above it. The sun's surface has an incredibly low ...
6
votes
2answers
129 views

Is it possible to have annealing without creep?

Annealing can repair a material by allowing atoms to find the minimum energy state; since solids have a surface tension this process will allow cracks to fuse and reverse fatigue. However, annealing ...
3
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2answers
385 views

Why do hot objects prefer to emit photons over electrons ? Is there electron-positron annihilation?

Why do hot objects prefer to emit photons over electrons ? Is there electron-positron annihilation ? If so , why ? Im confused by this.
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0answers
30 views

Does a flame produce free electrons? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Does Fire Conduct Electricity? Why? Is fire plasma? Does a flame produce free electrons ? Or is the answer sometimes depending on the chemicals ? Does the answer depend ...
-2
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1answer
74 views

heating verses air conditioning [closed]

My Co-workers and I are trying to figure this out, but can't think of a logical answer. It's probably an easy one, but I'll ask anyway- Ok, the heater is set at 73 degrees. The a/c is set at 73 ...
1
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1answer
587 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 ...
2
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3answers
221 views

Temperature in space

Temperature is a measure of kinetic energy transferred to particles, henceforth, space being vacuum, temperature cannot be measured. But then, there is cosmic background radiation. It is the leftover ...
1
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3answers
303 views

Is enthalpy defined under non-isobaric conditions?

My question is this, Does Enthalpy have a meaning under non-isobaric conditions? Is its existence as a property of a system independent of whether the system is under isobaric condition or not? ...
6
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1answer
766 views

Maximum Principle vs. Minimum Principle in Non-equilibrium Thermodynamics

Prigogine's Min. principle states that in steady-state non-equilibrium systems the entropy generation rate is at a minimum, i.e., a system will seek a steady-state that has min entropy generation. ...
3
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1answer
237 views

Does electric potential have a temperature?

When I took my first thermo class a tucked away chapter introduced Exergy in terms of electrical energy, meaning that the amount of electrical energy you could get from something is functionally its ...
3
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2answers
878 views

With ideal gases, varying quantity of moles, and having a constant volume how do temperature and pressure behave?

I'm trying to build a simulation of gases so I ended-up trying to use law of ideal gases ($PV = nRT$). In my scenario: volume is constant ($V=1\rm{m}^3$); a known quantity of moles are being added ...
0
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1answer
154 views

If human energy use were to increase by 2.3% per year, would we use all solar energy by 1400 years?

Assuming 2.3% per year exponential growth of human energy consumption (so, roughly speaking, that corresponds to multiplying consumption tenfold every century), it's argued that human annual energy ...
3
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4answers
2k views

why does a larger thermal conductivity provide a smaller temperature gradient?

I was thinking about Fourier's Law in heat transfer today and for some reason I am just not understanding the relationships it gives us. Fourier's tells us that if the heat transfer rate is kept ...
3
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1answer
267 views

Why aren't two systems in thermal equilibrium the same as one system?

I am reading Molecular Driving Forces, 2nd ed., by Dill & Bromberg. On page 53, example 3.9, we consider why energy exchanges between two systems from the point of view of the 2nd law. We ...
2
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2answers
5k views

Entropy Change During Reversible Processes

I'm confused about the Second Law of Thermodynamics. The Second Law of Thermodynamics prohibits a decrease in the entropy of a closed system and states that the entropy is unchanged during a ...
0
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0answers
491 views

Entalpy and entropy role in freezing-point depression phenomena

There's this "atomic" explanation of the freezing-point phenomena on Wikipedia that leaves me really intrigued. Consider the problem in which the solvent freezes to a very nearly pure crystal, ...
2
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2answers
109 views

Eutectic systems behavior near 100%-0% composition and low temperature

I can't understand why in this phase diagram , in the area where the system is approaching the 100% $\alpha$ or 100% $\beta$ composition, the state is just a pure solid. I mean, where does the ...
1
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2answers
588 views

What happens to heat waste produced by energy generation?

What happens to heat waste produced by energy generation on earth that must be there according to the laws of thermodynamics? So, it never dissipates and remains on earth?
1
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0answers
45 views

Any new texts directly on second law of thermodynamics? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Recommendations for Statistical Mechanics book Is anyone aware of any recent text that summarises the research and arguments on second law of thermodynamics and also on ...
5
votes
1answer
381 views

Can an induction coil heat two layers of metal?

Imagine we have an induction coil which is strong enough to heat a sheet of metal. We can put a sheet of ferromagnetic metal close to the coil at distance $h_1$, and it gets heated to temperature ...
1
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3answers
1k views

What's the physical difference between a convective heater and an infrared heater?

Could someone please explain why there are 2 types of space heaters-- one that is convective and one that is infrared? Why does the first one not radiate and why does the second one not heat the air? ...
9
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4answers
9k views

What happens when you heat vodka in a microwave?

Since ethanol has a lower dielectric constant than water would the water heat up and boil before the ethanol? Would the water transfer heat to the ethanol and, since ethanol has a lower boiling point, ...
2
votes
3answers
576 views

Less than absolute zero possible? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Temperature below absolute zero? According to this article http://www.sciencemag.org/content/339/6115/52 (preprint: http://arxiv.org/abs/1211.0545) it is. What do you ...
15
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3answers
510 views

Could temperature have been defined as $-\partial S/\partial U$?

When coming up with a definition of temperature, it's typical to start with an empirical definition that a system with a hotter temperature tends to lose heat to a system with a colder temperature. ...
-1
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2answers
651 views

At the atomic level, is heat conduction simply radiation?

Radiation and conduction are two ways that heat is transferred. Convection isn't really a mode of transfer as the actual heat transfer really occurs through radiation/conduction and not by some other ...
2
votes
1answer
329 views

Intuitive description of what a “Fermi Gas” really is?

This question is based in the area of material equations of state. I am wanting to know what a Fermi Gas really is. I have searched in several places for a decent description, but I have not found ...
3
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1answer
418 views

Does a quantum phase transition have latent heat?

As the title says, I am thinking about the question that whether a quantum phase transition has latent heat. If so, at 0 temperature, we can drive the system by some parameter from disorder phase to ...
1
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1answer
182 views

Calculating the $\frac{dp}{dT}$ slope using Clausis-Clapeyron

I've produced experimental data over how the boiling point of water varies with pressure and temperature and plotted this in a PT graph. I would like to verify my results using theory. The ...
4
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1answer
408 views

How can gas from compressed air can “take” heat from surrounding environment?

I have recently been reading about why a can of compressed air gets cold when the air it contains is discharged. From what I understand the change from a liquid to a gas requires energy and therefore ...
11
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3answers
857 views

Temperature below absolute zero?

I saw this Nature article today, which cites e.g. arXiv:1211.0545. And it makes no sense to me. The temperature of a collection of particles is the average kinetic energy of those particles. Kinetic ...
14
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there some way to narrow down the Leidenfrost point for water?

Cooks sometimes use the Leidenfrost effect to estimate the temperature of a frying pan by flicking a few drops of water onto the heated pan. I had no idea, before looking into this, that this could be ...
8
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2answers
2k views

Do photons lose energy while travelling through space? Or why are planets closer to the sun warmer?

My train of thought was the following: The Earth orbiting the Sun is at times 5 million kilometers closer to it than others, but this is almost irrelevant to the seasons. Instead, the temperature ...
2
votes
1answer
228 views

free energy and entropy of 2D soap froth

This is a (exploratory) computational project. The soap froth was created by injecting bubbles into a chamber formed by two rectangular plates which are 0.16cm. From the moment the soap froth was ...
8
votes
1answer
477 views

Modification of Newton's Law of Cooling

Yesterday I randomly started thinking about Newton's Law of Cooling. The problem I realized is that it assumes the ambient temperature stays constant over time, which is obviously not true. So what I ...
19
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2answers
435 views

Why are expressions such as $\operatorname{ln}T$ used in thermodynamics where $T$ is not dimensionless?

In all thermodynamics texts that I have seen, expressions such as $\operatorname{ln}T$ and $\operatorname{ln}S$ are used, where $T$ is temperature and $S$ is entropy, and also with other thermodynamic ...
2
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3answers
250 views

Why is there more steam when water is subject to less fire?

When I cook things, such as scallop and salmon, I found that the food may be more tender if I wait till the water boils (at 100 C) and immediately turn the fire lower so that the water is not bubbling ...
0
votes
1answer
347 views

What is the relation between surface area and radiation, if any?

Basically I wonder what happens to emitted radiation by douubling a light e.g. twice the surface area of the sun will emit how much more radiation? 4 times more? Is there a formula?
3
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3answers
804 views

Understanding mathematically the free expansion process of an ideal gas

I'm trying to understand mathematically that for the free expansion of an ideal gas the internal energy $E$ just depends on temperature $T$ and not volume $V$. In the free expansion process the ...
2
votes
2answers
217 views

Can the vibrational energy of a engine be used to increase efficiency?

In whole mechanics, we never talk about wasted vibrational energy! As we see in our daily life, a lot of energy is wasted as vibrational energy in every engine, for example as we fire our car's ...
2
votes
1answer
633 views

Lennard Jones liquid vapour phase transition

I am trying to generate a phase diagram of pressure versus temperature in a NPT ensemble using molecular dynamics method. I am using the Lennard Jones potential with 108 particles and Berendsen ...
2
votes
3answers
449 views

Why is an air conditioner more efficient in a low-thermal-mass house?

Why is an air conditioner more efficient in a low-thermal-mass house? I recently read To get these efficiency gains it is important to use the air conditioner as it is intended: the unit has to ...
1
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1answer
116 views

Parameter determining argon phase

Currently I am working a molecular simulation to determine phases of an argon NPT ensemble using Lennard Jones potential. Mainly I use the radial distribution function to determine solid, liquid, or ...
1
vote
3answers
987 views

Can one heat up a vacuum?

I've got a question about heating a vacuum. If there were, say, a container in space, at 2.7 degrees kelvin (the typical temperature of space, if I'm not mistaken) and as empty as space (as close to ...
9
votes
2answers
6k views

Can entropy be equal to zero?

I've searched for it but I only found contradicting answers from "scientists": Dr. David Balson, Ph.D. states: "entropy in a system can never be equal to zero". Sam Bowen does not refutes the ...
3
votes
0answers
117 views

Thermal imaging camera [closed]

I'm making a tea bag experiment (Make a hollow cylindrical tube from light paper e.g. from an empty tea bag. When the top end of the cylinder is lit, it takes off.) I need to know how hot air is ...
5
votes
3answers
333 views

experimental technique for measuring temperature of an ant

I am taking a course on thermodynamics. I have a question from my text(halliday & resnick,physics-1). They asked me to measure temperature of an ant or an insect or a small body,like a small ...
8
votes
1answer
115 views

Are Carnot engine efficieny and Fourier heat trasmission law related?

It just occured to me that the efficiency of Carnot cycles is $\eta= \frac{T_1 - T_2}{T_1}$, that is, the efficiency decreases as the difference between reservoir temperatures decreases. On the other ...
15
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4answers
3k views

Why does the nature always prefer low energy and maximum entropy?

Why does the nature always prefer low energy and maximum entropy? I've just learned electrostatics and I still have no idea why like charges repel each other. ...
2
votes
1answer
101 views

Where does the energy flow differ between a forward and reverse process?

Mathematically ($W=\int PdV$) and by the First Law, I understand that $1 \rightarrow 4 \rightarrow 3 \rightarrow 2 \rightarrow 1$ and $1 \rightarrow 2 \rightarrow 3 \rightarrow 4 \rightarrow 1$ are ...
2
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1answer
210 views

Are Carnot theorem and Carnot Cycle related?

This has been in my head for a while, and I think I finally have the answer. I was wondering what was so special about the Carnot cycle so it was used to demonstrate the Carnot theorem; the ...