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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Thermodynamics for Dummies: Entropy and temperature

I do not study physics and I have never had a course in thermodynamics. I have no idea what it is about, but I am currently taking a course where we had something about entropy. Would be great if ...
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85 views

Can I tune a magnetic field to conduct heat from a rotating object?

Is there a way to transfer heat from a rotating object made of iron into a suitable heat sink using a magnetic field as a transfer medium?
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533 views

Relations between pressure and temperature

I have several questions concerning thermodynamics and I order them in 4 points that may be related: What's the difference between heat and work at the atomic level? Isn't heat simply work between ...
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154 views

How is heat transferred to a thermometer?

Quick question. I can't seem to find a satisfactory answer online. How does a thermometer measure the average kinetic energy of atmospheric air? I assume that the energy is transferred by molecular ...
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90 views

What does adding a visible light blocking IR filter do with heat?

Lets say I have a strong halogen light source which has a lot of IR radiation (e.g. a construction lamp). If I change the transparent front glass from the enclosure with a IR filter that blocks ...
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25 views

Efficiency of a thermal reactor

I was told that the efficiency of any thermal reactor increases if it is operated at higher temperature- in this case, nuclear reactor was referred to. But I cannot seem to understand why...
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385 views

Is quantum uncertainty principle related to thermodynamics?

Would like to ask a question, but first i would like to say Hello Everybody in a way that plays the system, since some geniouses decided that one should not be able to say hello in a question. The ...
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631 views

First Order Phase Transition - Heat Capacity

At constant pressure : $\frac{dH}{dT}=C_p $ Hence, why doesn't the graph of $C_p$ against $T$ show two perfectly horizontal lines (with the obvious discontinuity) ? I mean the gradient of $H$ ...
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105 views

First law of thermodynamics applied to atmospheric fluid

I was reading an article that talks on a climate prediction model. This article proposes the following equation (energy balance): $$\rho_0 c_v\left( \frac{\partial T}{\partial t} + \sum^{3}_{j=1} ...
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1k views

Is there an equation to calculate the average speed of liquid molecules?

I seem to remember from first year physics that we can calculate the RMS speed of a stationary, ideal gas with $v=\sqrt{\frac{3RT}{M}}$. Does a similar equation exist for liquids?
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331 views

Do reversible processes exist in Nature?

Classical thermodynamics always discusses entropy in the light of reversible processes, and it lies at the heart of the definition of entropy. But do these reversible processes exist in Nature, or are ...
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282 views

When the matter is heated does the photon absorbed by electrons of atoms or by atoms themself?

When the matter is heated does the photon absorbs by electrons of atoms or by atoms themself?
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70 views

Free Energy, Avialable Work in a reversible process

I was reading the Wikipedia page on Helmoltz Free Energy, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helmholtz_free_energy, and run across a point I cannot unravel. The discussion goes as follows, I reproduce it ...
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1k views

How much electricity can be produced by my thermoelectric generator?

I am using a thermoelectric cooler from a pc's heatsink to produce electricity. Its size is 30mm by 30mm. I will cool it on one side at -10 degree Celsius and the other at 24 degree Celsius. Can ...
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473 views

Can a thermometer really measure the temperature of a substance?

When we measure the temperature of a substance by using a thermometer and waiting until the two come into thermal equilibrium, the thermometer will not display the original temperature of the ...
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104 views

Definition of entropy

In my textbook there is written $$\Delta S = \int_R \frac{\delta Q}{T}$$ where the $R$ means calculated along a reversible transformation. The variation of entropy only depends upon the ...
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550 views

Meaning of heat sink in engine analysis [closed]

I am confused with the meaning of sink. What part of vehicle engine acts as reservoir and what does as sink?
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65 views

Temperature limit on entropy of a paramagnet

We have $$S=Nk_B[\ln(2 \cosh(x)) - x \tanh(x)]$$ where $$x = \frac{\mu B}{k_BT}$$ In need to show that at low temperatures entropy $$S \approx Nk_B2xe^{-2x}$$ I wrote out the $\cosh(x)$ in terms of ...
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88 views

Radiation and absorption

Can thermal radiation from a cooler object (B, which emits longer wavelength radiation) ever ADD to the overall thermal energy level of a warmer object (A, which emits shorter wavelength radiation)? ...
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65 views

Calculating energy U from $\partial U/\partial q$

Imagine $N$ oscillators with only two possible energies, $\epsilon_0$ and $ \epsilon_1$, with $\epsilon_1 > \epsilon_0$. Taking $\epsilon_0 = 0$ for now I showed $\Omega(q\epsilon_1) = ...
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109 views

How does a MRI use 20.1kW yet creates over 204K BTU/h? [closed]

I've been reading through a manual about MRI operating procedures for a large healthcare provider. The manual (written by Siemens) states that the MRI machines use 9kW in stand-by mode and 20.1kW ...
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2k views

$\Delta T$, temperature units. How to use fahrenheit in this formula

To calculate the power in a fluid with a flow, the following formula is applied: $$P = \Delta T \rho c_p \times flow$$ $\Delta T$ can be entered as both Kelvin and Celsius. But what if I want to use ...
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52 views

An isolated Earth

It is known the fact that there is no way to extract energy (in any form) from any system without introducing some energy. The Earth for example, gets energy from the Sun, from nuclear fusion of ...
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77 views

Function describing an adiabatic process

I understand that an isothermic process, plotted on a PV diagram, can be described by a rectangular hyperbola. However, now I am wondering, what about an adiabatic process, what function best ...
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139 views

General Thermodynamic equation of state

I heard my professor saying that the equation $$ PV = \frac{2}{3}U $$ is valid for any non-relativistic gas, be it Ideal or Real gas(includes quantum ideal gases). Is this true, If it is how can we ...
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415 views

Is energy released during change of state?

When a substance changes state from solid to liquid, the temperature of the substance remains the same and the heat energy from the external source is converted to potential energy within the ...
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388 views

Temperature rate of change inside a cylinder

I was wondering about this today, mainly for baking a cylindrical cake. Say you have a solid cylinder which is at temperature T0 inside. Say you then move the ...
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220 views

Molar heat capacity of gas defined by relation $p=kV$

we have this problem where relation between Pressure($p$) , Volume($V$) is defined by relation $$p=kV$$ where $k$ is a constant and we have to find the molar heat capacity of the gas. Note:Ideal gas ...
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74 views

Microwaves and state of matter

Does the heating efficiency of a microwave oven depend on the state of matter that it heats? If yes, how?
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389 views

Why does the specific thrust of an ideal turbojet drop with increasing compressor pressure ratio?

As the pressure ratio increases in an ideal turbojet (fixed flight Mach number), the specific thrust, $\frac{F}{\dot{m_{air}}}$ rises, reaches a peak for small pressure ratios and then starts to ...
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150 views

Max temperature that can be obtained from radiation source when nonlinear interaction with matter is important?

Using a black body radiation as furnace it is usually said that the max achievable $T$ is limited to the T of the source. So a source of 3000K can not be used to heat a body above 3000K. A long ...
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648 views

Why do larger planets cool more slowly than smaller ones?

I learned it during my environment class. My professor introduced the concept--- ratio of surface area and volume. The numerator has connections with the radiative loss, while the denominator is ...
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398 views

What is the importance of state functions in physics?

I'm currently reading about the Carnot cycle and its significance on the formulation of entropy (because I want to try to understand the concept better), but I can't seem to answer the following ...
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326 views

What is meant by boiling off electrons in a heater coil?

In my electricity and magnetism course, we used a Thompson tube to produce an electron beam. There is a heating element at the back of the tube and the lab manual claims that "electrons are boiled ...
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70 views

Bug in linear thermal expansion, $L_0$ must be $0$

Assume we change the temperature of an object with negligible size in $2^{nd}$ and $3^{rd}$ dimensions from $T_0$ to $T_1$ to $T_2$, with all of them pairwise different. We choose a substance with ...
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1k views

Must a reversible engine be a carnot engine?

I have this homework question: "Show that any reversible engine operating between T1 and T2 is a carnot engine." I think I have a solution, but it feels very hand-wavy. We know that any process that ...
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161 views

What's the relationship between the energy density of a black-body and its radiant exitance?

Through a bit calculation we can derive that in a cavity, the energy density $$u(f,T)=\overline{E(f)}\times G(f)=\frac{8\pi h}{c^3}\frac{f^3}{e^{h\nu /kT}-1}$$ If we take the integral over all ...
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256 views

How does heating cause motion?

W.R.T. Newton's laws a force is required to change the state of rest of a body. Then how does heating cause a particular object's atoms and molecules to wiggle ? What is the force being applied when ...
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2answers
489 views

Difference between a quantum process and a thermal process?

I was reading an article online pertaining to quantum mechanics and I stumbled across these few sentences. A look at the corresponding energy regimes shows (Beck and Eccles 1992) that quantum ...
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170 views

What cause scientists to study Black Body Radiation?

After spending hours understanding what exactly Black Body radiation and Ultraviolet catastrophe is, I cannot help myself asking what was the reason that make scientists such as Wilhelm Wien and Max ...
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188 views

How can I determine (measure?) if spraying my A/C condenser with water will make it operate more efficiently?

My brother had an idea for a DIY project and I am curious if the science works out well enough to try it. The idea is to collect rainwater then mist it onto the air conditioners condenser coils (the ...
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170 views

Dimensional analysis of magnetic energy: dimensions of µ0 and H

When calculating the energy difference between the normal and the superconducting state in a superconductor at zero magnetic field, the result is as follows: Now I'm quite confident of this result, ...
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635 views

How is the distribution probability in the canonical ensemble derived?

I'm confused by the derivation of the canonical ensemble, namely the origin of the probability density, that is the Boltzmann factor. Here's what I have: We have a system of particles with ...
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1answer
470 views

What is tricritical point?

Critical point is the transition temperature of a second order phase transition. But what does tricritical point mean? WIki says that a tricritical point is a point in the phase diagram of a system at ...
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3answers
2k views

How is it possible to equate the internal energy at constant volume with the internal energy of an adiabatic process?

I hope my question makes sense. My problem is that, I have read through numerous textbooks that $$nCdT = -PdV$$ (where $NC$ is constant volume) when deriving the relationship between $T$ and $V$ for ...
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59 views

What is the coefficient $\mu_\text{air}$?

I am answering some exercises in thermodynamics, and I am still in trouble with some values and constants. In the exercise, it is given: $\mu_\text{air}=1.8\cdot10^{-5}~\text{kg/m s}$. What for is ...
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214 views

What is the term for heat generation by a flowing fluid?

I would like to know more about the heat distribution over time in a flowing liquid. To this end, I consider the Navier-Stokes equation (where the coefficients may be temperature dependent) and the ...
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2k views

How does a thermal temperature gun work?

I once worked as a kitchen porter over a winter season. We had fun with thermal temperature guns (like these) which I learned can be used for measuring the temperature of something a reasonable ...
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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? ...
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184 views

Calculating outside temperature based on indoor measurements

If I take three consecutive measurements $T_0$, $T_1$, $T_2$ at equal intervals, I can end up with two (Newton’s law of cooling) equations where the $e^{-kt}$ term is the same. $$T_{n+1} = ...