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The Case for Black Hole Thermodynamics, Part I: Phenomenological Thermodynamics

Wallace, David (2017) The Case for Black Hole Thermodynamics, Part I: Phenomenological Thermodynamics. [Preprint]

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Abstract

I give a fairly systematic and thorough presentation of the case for regarding black holes as thermodynamic systems in the fullest sense, aimed at students and non-specialists and not presuming advanced knowledge of quantum gravity. I pay particular attention to (i) the availability in classical black hole thermodynamics of a well-defined notion of adiabatic intervention; (ii) the power of the membrane paradigm to make black hole thermodynamics precise and to extend it to local-equilibrium contexts; (iii) the central role of Hawking radiation in permitting black holes to be in thermal contact with one another; (iv) the wide range of routes by which Hawking radiation can be derived and its back-reaction on the black hole calculated; (v) the interpretation of Hawking radiation close to the black hole as a gravitationally bound thermal atmosphere. In an appendix I discuss recent criticisms of black hole thermodynamics by Dougherty and Callender. This paper confines its attention to the thermodynamics of black holes; a sequel will consider their statistical mechanics.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Wallace, Daviddmwallac@usc.edu
Keywords: general relativity, quantum gravity, black holes, thermodynamics, statistical mechanics
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Gravity
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Depositing User: David Wallace
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2017 23:58
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2017 23:58
Item ID: 13523
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Gravity
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Date: October 2017
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/13523

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