PhilSci Archive

Thermodynamically Reversible Processes in Statistical Physics (Extended Version)

Norton, John D. (2016) Thermodynamically Reversible Processes in Statistical Physics (Extended Version). [Preprint]

WarningThere is a more recent version of this item available.
[img] PDF
Reversible_statistical_extended.pdf

Download (1MB)

Abstract

Equilibrium states are used as limit states to define thermodynamically reversible processes. When these processes are implemented in statistical physics, these limit states become unstable and can change with time, due to thermal fluctuations. For macroscopic systems, the changes are insignificant on ordinary time scales and what little there is can be suppressed by macroscopically negligible, entropy-creating dissipation. For systems of molecular sizes, the changes are large on short time scales and can only sometimes be suppressed with significant entropy-creating dissipation. As a result, at molecular scales, thermodynamically reversible processes are impossible in principle, even as approximations, when we account for all sources of dissipation.


Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Norton, John D.jdnorton@pitt.edu
Additional Information: Includes an appendix not in the journal version on processes with a Brownian particle.
Keywords: entropy reversible process
Subjects: General Issues > Models and Idealization
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Depositing User: John Norton
Date Deposited: 18 Mar 2016 02:48
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2016 02:48
Item ID: 11970
Subjects: General Issues > Models and Idealization
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Date: 16 March 2016
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/11970

Available Versions of this Item

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item