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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699 views

Can Lee-Yang zeros theorem account for triple point phase transition?

Now the prominent Lee-Yang theorem (or Physical Review 87, 410, 1952) has almost become a standard ingredient of any comprehensive statistical mechanics textbook. If the volume tends to infinity, ...
18
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735 views

List of known universality classes

I am working with RG and have a pretty good idea of how it works. However I have noticed that even though the idea of universality class is very general and makes it possible to classify critical ...
8
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145 views

Reading differential forms

When, usually in text of physics or concerning thermodynamical aspects of chemistry, I find notations such as$$\mathrm{d}f=g\,\mathrm{d}t$$ I always interpretate it as ...
6
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151 views

Is the stability matrix of a linearised RG flow always diagonalisable?

This is a follow up on "Why are the eigenvalues of a linearized RG transformation real?". My question is simple: Is there some physical (or mathematical) reason for the stability matrix of ...
6
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651 views

Is Feynman talking about the Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics?

In Volume 1 Chapter 39 of the Feynman Lectures on Physics, Feynman derives the ideal gas law from Newton's laws of motion. But then on page 41-1, he puts a caveat to the derivation he has just ...
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193 views

How to obtain the free energy of the canonical ensemble in Euclidean general relativity?

If the gravitational field couples with matter fields, such as a charged scalar field, I know the partition function of the grand canonical ensemble naturally relates to the path-integral expression ...
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27 views

Time for which a drop stays in the leidenfrost point

Is there any way to find out the time required for a drop of given dimensions to vaporize after attaining Leidenfrost point?
5
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0answers
110 views

Photon pumping in Laser

Let's consider a ring laser where the laser must pass through the gain material before it is sent toward a partially reflective surface $\ R=1-T $. The other mirrors are perfect reflectors with $\ ...
5
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1k views

Inflating a balloon (expansion resistance)

I am doing a quick calculation on how to calculate the pressure needed to inflate a perfectly spherical balloon to a certain volume, however I have difficulties with the fact that the balloon (rubber) ...
4
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35 views

Violations of Onsager reciprocity?

As far as I understand it, the modern statement of Onsager reciprocity is that the linear-response transport coefficient matrix, when transposed, is equal to that of the time-reversed system (reversed ...
4
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35 views

Radiative equilibrium in orbit of a black hole

According to Life under a black sun, Miller's planet from Interstellar, with a time dilation factor of 60,000, should be heated to around 890C by blue-shifted cosmic background radiation. How they ...
4
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80 views

Entropy change in a boiling egg

Yesterday in a rather intuitive Q/A session, by a visiting researcher in my town, this question got my attention.What he said was that if you boil an egg, the entropy inside the egg would increase.Now ...
4
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66 views

Physical interpretation of the chemical potential in Bose and Fermionic gas

I understand that both Fermions and bosons have the chemical potential $\nu <0$ when it is T>0, but still behave classically, the fermions would increase its chemical potential at T=0, whereas the ...
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76 views

Dimensional inconsistency in first law of black hole thermodynamics

The first law of black hole mechanics (let's simplify by considering a uncharged and non-rotating black hole) can be written as $$\delta M = T \delta S$$ If I use the definition of Hawking ...
4
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225 views

Free energy of coupled classical harmonic oscillators

I'm looking to find the thermodynamic (NVT) free energy of a classical coupled harmonic oscillator system such as the one below: (image taken from ...
4
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328 views

Coarse graining on measurement vs phase space (second law)

I've followed Leonard Susskinds series on "the theoretical minimum". In the entropy/reversibility episode in statistical mechanics, he explains (at least one way of) how the apparent paradox of ...
4
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36 views

What groups of symmetry are most suited for filling uniformely a spherical 3D space, whilst possessing the lowest possible surface-to-volume ratio?

I am looking for the closest known approximate solution to Kelvin foams problem that would obey a spherical symmetry. One alternative way of formulating it: I am looking for an equivalent of ...
4
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0answers
418 views

The surface area to volume ratio of a sphere and the Bekenstein bound

I am trying to relate the surface-area-to-volume-ratio of a sphere to the Bekenstein bound. Since the surface-area-to-volume-ratio decreases with increasing volume, one would surmise that, per unit of ...
4
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0answers
181 views

Lattice model completely constrained by boundary data

I am dealing with a lattice model that has the peculiar property that if I specify all the spins on the boundary, by local conservation laws, the whole lattice configuration (throughout the whole ...
4
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118 views

experiment proposal to validate microcausality

I've been wondering about microcausality for some time now (a recent question of mine regarding the topic) and i'm wondering if its possible to devise an experiment to detect potential violations I ...
3
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26 views

How does air going through silica gel change its humidity

Assume that the properties(temperature,humidity,velocity and so on) of the incoming air flow stay constant. The air flow goes through a silica gel plate. Humidity of the air will decrease, but how to ...
3
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35 views

Nose-Hoover Barostat

Much can be found about the Nose-Hoover Thermostat. However I seem to be having difficulty finding out details about the Nose-Hoover Barostat, and how it is implemented. Would anyone be able to give ...
3
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0answers
32 views

Exhaust liquefaction in internal combustion engines

Does an internal combustion engine provide enough efficiency to still deliver mechanical power, if it is forced to liquify it's own exhaust gases by compression? If gas containers would be added to ...
3
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0answers
42 views

A problem with ADM mass in the derivation of 1st law of black hole thermodynamics

The definition of ADM mass is $$M=\frac{1}{16\pi}\lim_{r\rightarrow\infty}\int \left(\frac{\partial h_{\mu\nu}}{\partial x^\mu}-\frac{\partial h_{\mu\mu}}{\partial x^\nu} \right)N^\nu dA$$ according ...
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29 views

Timescales of physical and chemical equilibrium

Background When describing the behaviour of a reacting systems, we usually don't hesitate to apply property models to relate the local properties of each species. For example, in the case of a gas ...
3
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0answers
59 views

Volume Minimization Principle?

I know of two major extremum principles: Entropy Maximization: for a specified $(U,V)$, the equilibrium state has a higher $S$ than all non-equilibrium states, i.e., equilibrium occurs at the maximum ...
3
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59 views

What is the best material to use in a solar heater box to convert solar energy into heat energy?

Suppose you want to design a solar heater box with the dimensions: 1 sq meter x 30.48 cm H. 5 sides of the box's interior will be insulated and the interior will be totally black. Ideal glass will be ...
3
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42 views

How do I choose which thermodynamical potential to use to describe a phase transition?

While studying thermodynamics I came across the Gibbs free energy and the Helmholtz free energy... IF I understand thing correctly, when describing a phase transition I can use any thermodynamical ...
3
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0answers
110 views

Le Chatelier's principle and energy minimization

In Callen's "Thermodynamics" in section 8.5 he asks us to imagine some perturbation $dX$ of an extensive parameter of a system in contact with a reservoir that acts to hold fixed the intensive ...
3
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0answers
291 views

Do any substances have the same density when solid and liquid

I know that as you heat something it expands, but this is proportional to the change in temperature, so if I compare the density of a liquid right before freezing and right after then the thermal ...
3
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82 views

What happens to the observed thermal energy of objects at relativistic speeds?

When an object is observed to move near the speed of light, what difference in thermal energy is observed? Does time dilation imply that it's colder?
3
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84 views

Does second law of thermodynamics imply the big bang?

Given that the second law of thermodynamics states that entropy always increases and the universe is currently not in a state of maximal entropy does that not imply that it must have started at a ...
3
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0answers
76 views

How to calculate the energy in thermoelastic damping?

Note - I'm not 100% sure *thermoelastic damping* is the right term here - so please feel free to correct the question in case I'm wrong! If a force is applied to an elastic rod such that it ...
3
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0answers
104 views

What liquid would wick away heat most quickly?

I've read and seen on various "life hack" websites that if you've forgotten to chill drinks, wrapping them in a wet paper towel and sticking them in the freezer for a few minutes rapidly cools them ...
3
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0answers
87 views

Why the non-analyticity of free energy function implies phase transition? And what's its connection with other 'higher level' free energies?

I have seen 'free energy' arising from several contexts in very different forms, and each contains different amount of information. For example free energy is defined as the logarithm of the ...
3
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0answers
71 views

Is it possible to efficiently extract phonons from a lattice?

The population inversion generated in lasers occurs in multi-level atomic systems. As an example, the Nd:YAG energy diagram is shown below. The pump pushes the Nd ions up to the upper levels, and ...
3
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0answers
98 views

Landau's derivation of the law of entropy increase - clarification

In Landau&Lifshitz V: Statistical Physics the following derivation of the law of increase of entropy is given. I need help understanding several crucial steps; I'll briefly summarize the notations ...
3
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0answers
272 views

What's the physical meaning of the integral of the squared temperature in a one-dimensional rod, used to prove uniqueness of soln. in heat eqn.?

Before getting to the question, some background. Let $u(x,t)$ be the temperature in a laterally insulated rod of length $L$, at position $x$ and time $t$. The temperature satisfies the heat equation ...
3
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156 views

Why (and how) do foods stick to a pan?

We all (sooner or later) have noticed that foods relatively high in protein (especially those low in fat) are very prone to sticking to a pan, or in general to any non-specially-coated metal surface. ...
3
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0answers
46 views

Boundary conditions for enthalpy waves inside a pipe

So I'm trying to solve a form of the wave equation for sound produced by a vortex distribution $\vec{\omega}$ convecting at velocity $\vec{v}$ . $$\left(\frac{1}{c_0^2} \frac{\partial^2}{\partial ...
3
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0answers
78 views

What is the deepest cause of the such high specific heat capacity of water?

Yes, I know about the hydrogen bridges. But I think, it isn't the deepest cause. Anyway, they are only second-order bindings, although quite strong. I think, somehow should have the water a ...
3
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0answers
158 views

Building free energy directly from lagrangian

Energy can be built from lagrangian when considering the symmetry of time $(\frac{\partial L}{\partial t}=0)$. Free energy is a generalization of energy when the system exchanges heat with the ...
3
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0answers
366 views

How much energy does it take to cook a steak?

Grilling in the park today I started to wonder just how implausible a portable battery-powered grill would be. There are of course a lot of parameters in this question, so let's narrow it down for ...
3
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0answers
635 views

Irreversible heat engines strictly less efficient than reversible ones

I understand how Carnot's theorem implies that irreversible heat engines must be no more efficient than reversible one's, but it is less clear why they need to be less efficient, as I have seen stated ...
3
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0answers
466 views

Heat transfer from hot water through a copper pipe to oil in a tank

I want to build a geyser attached to a pump with copper tubing running into an oil tank. This is done because the oil solidifies at a temperature below 15 degrees Celsius. I have done a few ...
3
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0answers
32 views

Experimental results regarding non-extensivity in small systems

From a statistical mechanics point of view, the extensivity of thermodynamics arises from the fact that we can neglect interaction terms in the Hamiltonian. This allows us to infer that when we put ...
3
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0answers
149 views

Thermodynamics - convection current

please could someone help explain the mechanism of a convection current as I keep finding conflicting explanations. Is a convection current caused by differences in density or differences in pressure? ...
3
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0answers
65 views

Thermalising a sub-system of a larger, interacting system

I'm considering a joint system consisting of a spin-1/2 particle (qubit) and a spin-l particle (reference) coupled via a Hamiltonian $H_0$. At a certain point I want to couple the qubit to a bosonic ...
3
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175 views

“Single-shot” Heat engine efficiency limits

The sun is 5778K and Earth is ~290K. Using the sun as the hot reservoir and earth as a cold reservoir we get 95% Carnot efficiency. However, the solar power efficiency limit is only 86%, see: ...
3
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239 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 ...