Arabian Journal for Science and Engineering

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 329–340 | Cite as

Entropy Generation Minimization, Exergy Analysis, and the Constructal Law

Research Article - Special Issue - Mechanical Engineering


This is a review of the evolution of thermodynamics during the past four decades, from classical (engineering) thermodynamics, to thermodynamic optimization, entropy generation minimization, exergy analysis, and most recently the constructal law of design and evolution in nature. The review shows that the first law and the second law refer to systems as “black boxes”, without configuration. Yet, most of the literature in modern thermodynamics is about systems with configuration and about improving the performance of designs. The systems of nature are not black boxes: they have configurations that evolve ceaselessly. To complete the thermodynamics description of nature, the constructal law was added to the first law and the second law. The result is constructal thermodynamics, which unites the animate, inanimate, and engineered systems.


Constructal thermodynamics Entropy generation minimization Exergy analysis Constructal law Design in nature 


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Copyright information

© King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials ScienceDuke UniversityDurhamUSA

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