Thermodynamics for Physicists
Physicists know thermodynamics, but many use it only rarely in their research work. Knowledge therefore is not supplemented by intuition . In biomolecular physics, thermodynamics is necessary. Equilibrium problems and dynamic questions call for thermodynamic concepts. In particular, entropy and volume changes during biomolecular reactions may be among the most important clues to the mechanism of a reaction. In the present section, an outline is given of the aspects of thermodynamics that we will need most. The discussion will be brief; further details and generalizations can be found in many texts –.
KeywordsPartition Function Thermodynamic Potential Legendre Transformation Helmholtz Energy Thermal Entropy
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.H. F. once sat in Pauli’s office when Otto Stern walked in and said, “Pauli, one can really see that you are a student of Sommerfeld. You don’t understand thermodynamics either.”Google Scholar
- 2.L. D. Landau and E. M. Lifshitz. Statistical Physics, 3rd edition. Pergamon Press, 1980. 2 vols.Google Scholar
- 3.P. M. Morse. Thermal Physics, 2nd edition. W. A. Benjamin, New York, 1969.Google Scholar
- 5.Extensive quantities are proportional to the number, n, of moles of the substance present, intensive ones independent of n. In equilibrium, intensive quantities have the same value throughout the system.Google Scholar
- 6.For an extensive discussion of entropy, see A. Wehrl. General properties of entropy, Rev. Mod. Phys., 50:221-60, 1978.Google Scholar
- 7.A procedure to derive additional relations between thermodynamic quantities is described in , pp. 96–101.Google Scholar