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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Why is compressible flow near the choke point so efficient?

Imagine a steady state, one-dimensional, compressible flow in a horizontal pipe of constant cross sectional area. This flow can be isothermal, adiabatic (Fanno), or diabatic (Rayleigh). As an ...
8
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1answer
2k views

LED Thermal Modeling (How to solve heat equation with constant heat source)

I have a mechanical design with LEDs that generate heat. I want to estimate the temperature at the LED junction vs. time, but especially at steady state. Knowing the LED voltage drop and current, I ...
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1answer
106 views

What do we mean when we talk about Gibbs Free Energy?

Before I start, I'm aware that this question may be better suited on the Chemistry or Biology site, but it's my belief that physicists are more likely to have a clear understanding on what certain ...
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401 views

Mechanical Equivalent of Heat

Recently I have been looking up James Joule's experiment regarding the mechanical equivalent of heat. After viewing some drawings of the apparatus, I assumed that the lines holding the weights would ...
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76 views

Is there a true parallel between Gibbs' phase rule and Euler's polyhedral formula?

Gibbs' phase rule states: $$F=C-P+2$$ where $F$ is number of degrees of freedom, $C$ is number of components, $P$ is number of phases. Euler's polyhedral formula states: $$V+F-E=2$$ where $V$ is ...
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574 views

What meaning does the slope of the efficiency path on a Mollier diagram have in terms of temperature?

Let's say I have a steam turbine that I have modified to increase its isentropic efficiency. As a specific case, consider the modification outlined in the Mollier diagram below. The arrows represent ...
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66 views

Hysteresis and dissipation

Hysteretic phenomena are often linked to dissipation. When there is an hysteresis loop, the dissipated energy can usually be computed as the area of the cycle. For example, in ferromagnetic ...
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669 views

Simple thermodynamics basics - can internal energy be calculated?

Well this got me stumbled, because I've been wondering what the "question" is. One of the example examns got the following question (strangely there are no supplied solution books): A $0.2 {\rm ...
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1answer
105 views

Amount of energy to separate Gases - relationship to concentration

I want to understand the efficiencies of separating mixed gases, and for that I want to understand the thermodynamic limit case. Looking at the wikipedia page for entropy of mixing, I find the ...
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284 views

Does a negative line tension in a 3-fluid immiscible interface make sense?

This question is inspired by this question/answer pair: Is this formula for the energy of a configuration of 3 fluids physically reasonable? Consider three immiscible fluids forming contact surfaces, ...
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1answer
72 views

Thermodynamics, chaperones : How to model polymer fragmentation

Living polymers are well described by equilibrium statistical physics. Now I would like to consider a case were living polymers undergo fragmentation due to chaperones. I can think of a kinetic ...
2
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1answer
62 views

Lennard-Jones induced pseudo-molecules

It can be shown that the Lennard-Jones potential - which describes the interaction between particles in non-ideal gases - gives rise to pseudo-molecules: after a triple "collision" of three ...
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43 views

Bulk flow of air in a long tube between Antarctica and Australia?

I have a 5km diameter clear plastic tube which is open at each end and runs from the center of Antarctica to Lake Eyre in Australia. The tube is on the ground where it can be and at sea level on the ...
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1answer
40 views

Considerations and questions for a DIY heatpipe, how to choose a working fluid?

I plan to build a DIY heat pipe! For more info on what a heat pipe is, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heat_pipe. I would like to use it to cool a desktop graphics card I have. I am having trouble ...
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1answer
63 views

Rayleigh-Taylor Instability dependence on acceleration direction

I'm trying to bolster my understanding of the Rayleigh-Taylor instability, and I've gotten stuck on the point of which fluid (more or less dense) is being accelerated into the other. Cases of uniform ...
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1answer
83 views

Can I express the heat flow of a fluid in terms of estabilshed characteristics of the velocity distribution?

If $\rho$ is the mass density of a fluid and $A({\bf v})$ is an function of the velocity, which is distributed according to $f({\bf v})$, we have an averaging process $A\mapsto \langle A\rangle:=\int ...
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69 views

Specific Heat of Nano Particles

Specific heat of nano particles is less than bulk specific heat of them. Why?
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138 views

What are the largest thermal gradients achievable in a lab environment?

I am looking for a system capable of creating a gradient of $100\, \mathrm{K}/\mathrm{\mu \textrm{m}}$ on a $30\, \mathrm{\mu}\textrm{m}$ spacing of a system mounted on a Si-N membrane. My so-called ...
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1answer
304 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 more specific). However I am having some ...
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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
371 views

Coffee cooling in a cup

Will coffee in two differant size styrofoam cups in the same room conditions cool at the same rate? One cup is 8 oz. and the other would be 12 oz.
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1answer
106 views

What is happening as our Universe is expanding? Is entropy increasing or decreasing?

Scientists say that entropy of our universe is increasing as it is expanding and our universe is cooling down gradually from the time of it's birth.If something is getting cooler and cooler then how ...
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1answer
108 views

What cools off faster a square or a disc?

What cools off faster and why, a square (4 right angles, all sides same length)with an area of 100 inches or a disc with an area of 100 inches. The same material and thickness.
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70 views

Calculating Phase Diagrams (Calphad)

I am calculating the phase diagrams for Li-Mg binary alloy with reference to the following text: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/articleDetails.jsp?arnumber=5600701 In the equation used in the above ...
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169 views

Heat transfer in a pipe

I have a gas (assuming air) at T = 500 K that enters a cylindrical pipe. The outlet target temperature is 330K. There will be heat transfer via: Forced convection from the gas to the inside of the ...
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1answer
2k views

What is the effect of an increase in pressure on latent heat of vaporization?

What is latent heat of vaporization ($L_v$) in the first place? Wikipedia seems to indicate that it is the energy used in overcoming intermolecular interactions, without taking into account at all any ...
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184 views

Calculating the change in entropy in a melting process

I have a homework question that I'm completely stumped on and need help solving it. I have a $50\, \mathrm{g}$ ice cube at $-15\, \mathrm{C}$ that is in a container of $200\, \mathrm{g}$ of water at ...
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210 views

Maxwell's Demon bug, trapdoor space and time

What about the size of the door (space) and how long has it to be opened (time)? I think Maxwell's demon would have a problem with space, if the door is too wide (more than one particle size), then ...
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11 views

Thermal resistance of thermal interface materials?

Thermal conductivity are often used for surfaces between the computer chip and the heat sink to increase heat transfer and they want high thermal conductivity to decrease the thermal resistance. By ...
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1answer
24 views

Heat flow in a hollow cylinder

Consider a hollow cylinder of different outer radius and inner radius and two different temperatures are maintained at the outer and inner surfaces such that inner temperature is higher. Because of ...
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1answer
30 views

How to use specific heats and temperature change in a system to calculate mass?

In a system where multiple liquids and solids are mixed together with different specific heats at different initial temperatures, reaching an equilibrium temperature, how do all of these things relate ...
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36 views

Latent heat of vaporization

The molecular weight of water is 18.015 gram. The number of moles of water in one liter (1000 gram) will be: $3.34\times 10^{25}$ molecules (in 1kg). We know that latent heat of vaporization of water ...
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1answer
44 views

Time to heat/cool a room

So, I have a basic, very basic, understanding of thermodynamics. I don't take it until next semester. I'm attempting to write a program which plots a temperature over time graph of a room being ...
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1answer
25 views

Which thermoelectric effect is better?

I am doing an experiment which requires the thermoelectric effect. I know about the Seebeck and the Peltier effects. Well, from what I have found till now on these topics is that they both can produce ...
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1answer
79 views

Heating effects of microwaves

I understand the heating effect(dielectric heating) of microwaves. This heating is caused by using a frequency of 2.45 GHz and this is the same frequency at which Bluetooth works and the L and S ...
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1answer
35 views

How does electric current generate thermal energy?

How does free electrons moving through a wire cause random vibrational motion of the positive ions?
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1answer
45 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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1answer
26 views

Modelling multiple heat sources?

I am working on a project to model heat transfer in a data center. I have basic models for a one dimensional heat transfer using conduction and convection. Such as, taking a server and modelling the ...
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1answer
23 views

Is vapour pressure based on partial pressures or just total pressure on the liquid?

The explanation for the boiling point of water is that at 100C, the vapour pressure becomes greater than atmospheric pressure. But say you had a a jar of water sealed in argon at 1atm, which is larger ...
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1answer
27 views

Can I apply symmetry to this boundary value problem (BVP)?

Let's say I have a hollow cylindrical shell with inner radius $a$ and outer radius $b$ and length $L$. The temperature at at z=L is $T_{2}$ and the temperature at z=0 is $T_{1}$. There is also an ...
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1answer
58 views

Otto cycle efficiency described in pressure ratio (instead of compression ratio)

The Otto cycle's thermodynamic efficiency is often described using the compression ratio: $$\eta_{th} = 1 - \left( \tfrac{1}{CR} \right ) ^ {k-1},$$ (where CR is the compression ratio, and k the ...
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1answer
40 views

What is concept of temperture in ion trap?

As only several thousands of particles are holding in the ion trap, how can we understand the temperature?
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328 views

Carnot Engine for Finite Reservoirs

Two solid, finite thermal reservoirs have temperatures of $T_1$ and $T_2$ respectively and an engine operates between the two. Assume $T_1 > T_2$ and that each reservoir has constant heat capacity ...
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454 views

Carnot efficiency, coefficient of performance for a refrigerator

I was reading that a new type of refrigerator might reach a coefficient of performance (COP) of 10. This seems quite the achievement and the authors state that their approach might achieve a Carnot ...
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135 views

direct conversion of heat to electric potential / current - are there theories that contradict the 'Kelvin Statement'?

In particular, William Thomson (Kelvin) appeared to be wrong about key things in physics (initially X-rays, aether, even aviation feasibility). ...
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1k views

What is the insulative value of water?

I am having a hard to finding what the R value of water is. I am trying to compare it to styrofoam (which has an R-Value of 5). EDIT Based on the assumption that water has an insulative property, ...
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2k views

How to determine size of a Heat Exchanger?

I am designing a Tube heat-exchanger, similar to this: My process requires water (at room temperature, 18C ~ 22C) that is being pumped out of a small tank (300 Liters) to be heated in a ...
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150 views

what is the physics just at bubble formation.

ie do a couple of molecules with more energy bang out a volume in the liquid where molecular attraction is overcome and the energetic molecules can move at random? where can I find out more about ...
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126 views

2 streams going into an engine and 2 come out. Find the enthalpy?

Problem: Steam supply to an engine is made of two streams that mix before entering the engine. Stream 1 flows at a $.01\frac{kg}{s}$ with an enthalpy of $2952\frac{kJ}{kg}$ and a velocity of ...
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28 views

2nd Law of Thermodynamics and Cosmology

Does the 2nd law definitely show the universe had a beginning and refute the idea of an eternal universe?