173 reputation
10
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location Argentina
age 23
visits member for 1 year, 8 months
seen May 6 '13 at 14:52

As a chemical engineering student, I have realized through the years how important a timely answer to a question might be. In my personal experience, pending concerns over one's own understanding of a non-intuitive defined concept in phyisics or chemistry (for example, when you're giving your first steps in dealing with thermodynamics-related issues) will put a limit on your attempts to achieve further advances in the subject.

Of course, there are always also those free-minded folks who can "go on" with a course, even though they didn't accomplish to grasp previously-discussed ideas in their entirety. But as a matter of common sense, those "holes" in their knowledge database about that field will sooner or later become apparent. Without loss of generality, this pedagogical rule can be extrapolated to any other rigorously enough field, as this is a general feature of the scientific and technical learning process.

The thing is, they will become apparent usually sooner than later, with embarrasing or serious consequences. And it's one's responsibility to be sure that's not the case.


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awarded  Caucus
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asked Mechanical effects of convective flow in steady-state stagnant film diffusion
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awarded  Nice Question
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awarded  Critic
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revised How is $\frac{dQ}{T}$ measure of randomness of system?
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comment How is $\frac{dQ}{T}$ measure of randomness of system?
This answer effectively complements what has been already said, and succintly shows the relation between added heat and the increase in the number of possible microstates corresponding to the same macrostate; and does it without assuming no more than an elementary background of statistical mechanics. +1
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revised How is $\frac{dQ}{T}$ measure of randomness of system?
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revised How is $\frac{dQ}{T}$ measure of randomness of system?
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answered How is $\frac{dQ}{T}$ measure of randomness of system?
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awarded  Commentator
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comment Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
A few clarifications: when you say "suppose the polarization of a magnet from a completely unpolarized state uses 1 kJ of energy" that's indeed a meaningful expression (I would recommend the use of "magnetization" instead of polarization, to avoid ambigüity with this), but your assumption that "one would expect the strength of the magnetic field to dissipate as it exerts force" is not correct. If you pick up a magnet with another one from the floor, the work done comes from your arm, and the magnetic force just provides a link (like a rope).
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revised Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
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revised Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
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revised Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
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comment Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
But I agree that the final sentence is unnecessarily aggressive. I'll remove it.
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comment Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
I don't agree with you it's right to use the word "polarization" freely when talking about electromagnetic properties of materials -that is a technical, well-defined term which refers to the development of surface charges by microscopic induction of dipoles in dielectrics. He might not be talking nonsense, but the confusion that the OP seems to have between the concepts of force and work is usually settled by reading some introductory texts in physics.
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revised Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
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revised Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics
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answered Demonstrate magnets adhere to conservation of energy pursuant to the laws of thermodynamics