Questions tagged [thermodynamics]

Covers the study of (mostly homogeneous) macroscopic systems from a heat/energy/entropy point of view. Consider also using tag: [statistical-mechanics].

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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, ...
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Phil Anderson's Criticism of Existence of Stable Dissipative Structures

In this book chapter (1987), titled "Broken symmetry, emergent properties, dissipative structures, life," Phil Anderson and Daniel Stein criticize defining life as a dissipative structure (a ...
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Demystifying jamming in many-body systems

From a theoretical point of view, what has been the most successful approach to understanding jamming phenomena? I understand there's still a lot of debate around this subject, namely whether a ...
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Basic Thermodynamics: Quasistatic Adiabatic Process

I'm going through the exercises in a Thermodynamics book, just to revise and build my intuition. Right now, I'm working on: Show that for a quasistatic adiabatic process in a perfect gas, with ...
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A theoretical model for evaporation occurring when wind is blowing over the surface of water

I've recently done an experiment in which I was studying the variation of the cooling rate of hot water in a draft (wind). The air was blown directly over the surface of the water (kept in a ...
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Why there is no chemical potential on this thermodynamic relation?

I was following the book by Landau and Lifshitz, Fluid Mechanics (2nd edition) and got stuck trying to understand one of their arguments. On the chapter about Relativistic Fluid Dynamics it is stated ...
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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 ...
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217 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 $\ R_1=...
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1answer
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How does adiabatic cooling make a nebula colder than the CMB?

According to measurements, the gas from the Boomerang Nebula is expanding so fast that it's colder than the cosmic microwave background radiation... how does such a simple mechanic work on such a ...
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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?
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1answer
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Melting ice: reversible or irreversible?

I am looking into whether the melting of ice (or any substance for that matter) at constant pressure and temperature is reversible or irreversible. Different sources say different things, and it may ...
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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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On Ricci flow and 'nonlinear relativistic heat equation

This is somewhat related to a previous question, but is different at the core. I proposed a Relativistic Ricci flow equation that takes the form $$\frac{\partial R}{\partial t} = \alpha \Box^2 R = -...
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488 views

Voltage and Fermi levels

It is well known that the voltage $V$ across, say, a p-n junction can be related to the electro-chemical potentials (usually and improperly called Fermi levels) at the borders of the junction $$ qV = \...
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Why one-particle irreducible functional is closely related to pressure (electroweak phase transition)?

Consider the following system: the SM lagrangian somewhat below the EW transition, where we keep only bilinear terms, only the heaviest fermion -- $t$-quark, and plus the potential terms for a VEV $\...
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858 views

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. (source: utk.edu)...
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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 ...
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What is the link between free energy and lagrangian?

Free energy is a generalization of energy when the system exchanges heat with the environment. Energy, in its turn, can be extracted from lagrangian under the symmetry of time $(\frac{\partial L}{\...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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1answer
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Freshman-level justification for the use of $(x,p)$ in thermodynamic phase space

I'm looking for an elementary explanation, at the freshman level, of why we use position and momentum for phase space rather than, say, position and velocity. At this level, it's not going to work to ...
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1answer
425 views

Calculate the entropy per atom in Bohmian Mechanics

Bohmian mechanics description of a large number of interacting atoms would require a large phase space due to the large number of classical degrees of freedom. The entropy per atom is given as the ...
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Bose-Einstein condensation and phase transition

I would like to ask the following question for which I cannot find a definite answer in the literature. Of what ORDER is the phase transition leading to Bose-Einstein condensation for a ideal and ...
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1answer
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What happens when ice and water are placed together at the same temperature in an isolated system?

Suppose ice and water (not necessarily of the same mass) are both at $0^{\circ}$C and placed into a perfectly insulated, sealed container so that it is filled completely. If we leave this system alone ...
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How large is large $N$?

I once heard Lenny Susskind relate the question: "how many particles do you need in a box for the ideal gas law to 'pretty much' hold?" Obviously this question requires a notion of 'pretty ...
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Why is the Fokker-Planck equation only valid for the forward and backward velocities but not for the flux velocity?

I noticed that the Fokker-Planck equation is often only written for the forward velocity $\vec b$ and the backward velocity $\vec b^*$: \begin{align} \partial_t \rho + \nabla (\vec b \rho) &= D \...
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Relation between maximally mixed state and thermal state

Hawking calculated the density matrix of the outgoing radiation to be a thermal state. I have heard people say this is a maximally mixed state. Is this because given a fixed average energy in the ...
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What happens to topological insulators at finite temperature?

There is a similar question here, but I had a few things I wanted to ask. So basically pretty much all analysis/ theory of topological insulators is for pure wave-functions and conservative ...
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What is the Spectral Form Factor?

In many papers in Random Matrix Theory [1-3] related to quantum chaos (and, in particular, to the SYK model) they analytically continuate the partition function of the system $Z(\beta)$ into $Z(\beta +...
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Fluctuation-Dissipation Theorem in the Keldysh Formalism

In Kamenev's book Field Theory of Non-Equilibrium Systems (he also has lecture notes online here, which contains the relevant statement on pg. 17), he states that the following equation $$G^K(\epsilon)...
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Bose Condensation; interacting vs. non-interacting

I have some problems unifying, the two way I learned how a Bose condensate appears. The main problem is that the observables seem to be quite different. In statistical physics lecture one starts with ...
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How does renormalization relate to emergence?

In statistical mechanics renormalization is often related to coarse-graining which in turn allows to calculate some macroscopic states. The resulting macroscopic description is sometimes called ...
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Can any element be a metal?

I was reading that hydrogen can become a metal in some cases, like in Jupiter, and the same for helium. Is this true for all non-metals?
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Are order parameters ultimately subjective?

I keep bumping into order parameters in scientific papers, reviews, articles, etc, but I can never get a firm grip on them. Order parameters seem terribly subjective to me. Basically the way I ...
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235 views

Unruh effect, temperature and energy density

The Unruh effect basically states that an accelerated observer will see warm gas of particles following a blackbody distribution with some temperature T, where as an inertial observer would see none. ...
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Is there an equation of state for a non-ideal Fermi gas?

For a gas of self-interacting electrons (i.e. a non-ideal Fermi gas), is there is there any sense in trying to define an equation of state? If so, what is the equation of state for a gas of electrons? ...
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How to calculate the energy transfer between working coil and working piece and dissipated energy of working piece in induction heating?

For who don't know how does induction heating work, a short description can be found here. However, my question is about physics. Assume I have a coil inductor calculated carefully 50 uH as below: ...
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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 ...
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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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856 views

Partial derivatives vs total derivatives in thermodynamics

The specific heat of a system is defined as $$C_z = T \left( \frac{\partial S}{\partial T} \right)_{z=\text{const}}.\tag{1}$$ Sometimes however, I find the same definition, but with total derivatives ...
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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?
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Entropy: Disorder or energy dispersal?

The first definition of entropy given by Clausius is I believe this $$S=Q/T$$ It is as I understand a common fact to understand entropy and maybe often teach it as a measure of disorder through the ...
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Validity of topological thermodynamics?

I've been reading some material by R. Kiehn, developing a topological approach to non-equilibrium thermodynamics through Cartan forms, where the fundamental claim is that irreversible processes are ...
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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 Weaire–...
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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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An explanation for the Landauer's principle

Has anyone understood the Landauer's principle? What is the current status? In specific, is there a theoretical derivation of the Landauer's Principle?(not the heuristic one based on Salizard's ...
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2answers
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Degrees of Freedom of a Linear Triatomic Molecule

I was introduced to a formula for finding the DOF of a molecule which was 3N-k and i was told, it was just for translation and rotational degree of freedom. Here N is the no. Of atoms in that ...
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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 ...
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How did I superheat my pasta water?

Last week I had an incident in the kitchen where I almost scolded my face with hot water. What happened: I was boiling some water in one pan and a sauce with veggies and meats in another next to it. ...

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