# Questions tagged [equilibrium]

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304 views

### Computational scaling of quantum and classical Monte Carlo algorithms

How does the computational complexity of finding an equilibrium thermal state for a given Hamiltonian at a given temperature scale with system size under classical and quantum Monte Carlo? I know ...
455 views

### Can a substance have zero vapour pressure above absolute zero?

According to this Reddit thread, the answer is no, vapor pressure can't be zero when temperature is above absolute zero. I suspect the answer might actually be yes according to a precise definition I ...
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### Entropy and equilibrium concepts at astronomic scales

I am always puzzled to read here and there discussions dealing with thermodynamic concepts applied to astronomic scales where gravity matters. To my opinion, there is a certain carelessness to go into ...
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### Thermodynamic equilibrium or thermal equilibrium and equipartition theorem

In all derivations of the equipartition theorem I can find a thermodynamic equilibrium distribution is used to show it's validity. But more vague sources (physics.stackexchange answer by Luboš Motl, ...
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### What are some good articles on trend to equilibrium?

I am interested in studying systems out of equilibrium that are trending to equilibrium. Trend to equilibrium, entropy production, etc. seem to be very tricky topics. Any suggestions will be ...
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### Is there any example of a real-life system which violates the “third law” of thermodynamics while remaining at equilibrium?

I assume the following statement for the "third law" of thermodynamics: $$\lim_{N \to \infty} \lim_{T \to 0} \frac{S}{N} = 0 \tag{1}\label{1}$$ That is to say, I am considering those systems with a ...
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### Why the convexity of $E(S,V,N)$ implies that at thermodynamic equilibrium the energy is minimal?

I do understand that in the case of mechanics for example, if there is a soccer ball inside a "well", at mechanical equilibrium, the ball will be at the bottom of the well. ball http://electron6.phys....
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### Detailed Balance for Quantum Master Equations from System Hamiltonians with Degenerate Spectrum

Kossakowski, Andrzej, et al. ("Quantum detailed balance and KMS condition." Communications in Mathematical Physics 57.2 (1977): 97-110) gave a proof that the stationary state of a quantum dynamical ...
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### Thermodynamic process

"During this process, the system is always in thermal equilibrium with the surroundings." Does this statement means the process is adiabatic? Since the temperature of both systems is the same, there ...
42 views

### Is there an open quantum system analogue of the equilibration time bounds for classical ergodic Markov chains?

Background For classical ergodic discrete Markov chains, we can bound the time taken to reach the stationary distribution to the spectral properties of the transition matrix. I will outline this ...
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### Are interactions with the environment unnecessary to attain thermodynamic equilibrium?

First of all I apologize for the lenght of this question. I have some basic statistical mechanics facts that I am confused about, and in this subject it is probably better to be precise. When ...
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### 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 ...
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### Is it possible to have a line rather than a point where the three states of a substance can exist?

Most of us are familiar with state diagrams that define which of the three states a substance will take given the pressure and temperature. And that some substances, such as water for example, exhibit ...
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### How does thermalisation make incoherent waves into coherent ones?

Thermalisation is the process by which out-of-equilibrium systems reach equilibrium. Coherence refers to the phases of waves being a constant difference apart. While reading a paper on axion stars, I ...
193 views

### Conceptual Question about Suspension Bridge Forces

Two walkways are suspended from vertical rods. In the first scenario, one long rod supports both walkways and is attached to the ceiling. In the second scenario, two shorter rods are attached to each ...
2k views

### Angles in a static equilibrium

I have three masses $\left(F_\alpha, \, F_\beta , \, \text{and} \,F_g \right)$ with 2 pulleys, and a wind variable which is in static equilibrium. I have already calculated the appropriate forces for ...
311 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 ...
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### Why dynamic equilibrium exists?

We know that at equilibrium Gibbs energy is minimum. We also know that at equilibrium both forward and reverse reactions occur simultaneously, and also we know that for a reaction to be spontaneous ...
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### Why does the Rayleigh-Taylor instability growth rate increase with wave number?

It can be easily derived that the Rayleigh-Taylor instability growth rate on the boundary of two fluids (i.e. denser fluid supported by a lighter fluid) under gravity, $g$, is given by $gk\eta$, where ...
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### Problems with understanding conductors in electrostatic equilibrium

I watched a few videos on conductors in electrostatic equilibrium and all I understood is that the charges stick to the surface of the conductor. So does that mean if I have a copper wire with no ...
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### How long does it take for a balloon to deflate?

Since gas flows from an area of high pressure to low pressure, upon opening an aperture on say a balloon one would expect the contents to diffuse out until both the inside and outside reach a pressure ...
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### Thermodynamics - thermal equillibrium

If I got a heat source (water at $100^oC$), the heat reservoir (infinite lake with the temperature $5^oC$) and my thermodynamic process proceeds at $20^oC$ somewhere above the source. The process is ...
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### What is the meaning of free energy out of equilibrium?

So in statistical mechanics the free energy $F$ (either canonical or grand canonical) can be found from the partition sum $\mathcal{Z}$ as: $$\mathcal{Z}=\exp(-\beta F).$$ As far as I can read it ...
235 views

### Summation of Forces through a Lever Linkage

I'm trying to brush up on some of my force and torque stuff so I can do some modelling in software. My problem is, it's been a while and I'm unsure of how correct my work is. I have a system as ...
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### How to consider another Cartesian axis?

Well, I solved the problem. The point is that I used a x and y axis with x parallel to the inclination of the box, but I wanted to think differently, if one considers the y axis itself containing the ...
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### Why is it valid to assume that the liquid-vapour interface is always saturated during evaporation?

For steady state evaporation, I read from two textbooks which simply states that the partial pressure of vapour of interest (say water) at the liquid-vapour interface is equal to the saturation ...
101 views

### Vacancy Generation / Annihilation Time (Relaxation Time)

Vacancy Generation/Annihilation Time, Recombination Time and Relaxation Time ($\tau$) are all synonymously used in atomic physics literatures. They're defined as the time that it takes for vacancies ...
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### Reconciling Different Vapor Pressure Definitions

In describing vapor pressure, I have often heard the following intuition: Assume a closed container that is partially filled with water. Above the water lies a vacuum. The water will vaporize until ...
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### Biological Themodynamics - What does an endpoint saturated signal mean. How does it relate to equillibrium constant

I have had a question that has been bugging me for a couple of years in my graduate school career, and I was wondering if perhaps some physicist could help explain it to me. Given an endpoint assay ...
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### What is the angle of the string with the vertical?

A heavy uniform sphere of radius $a$ has a light inextensible string attached to a point on its surface. The other end of the string is fixed to a point on a rough vertical wall. The sphere rests ...