Introduction From Metaphors to Models of Heat

Part of the Graduate Texts in Physics book series (GTP)


Traditional courses treat thermodynamics in a form unlike anything else known in physics. In particular, we are told that it is a theory of the equilibrium of heat and not of how and how fast things happen in real life. This combines with the conceptualization of heat as energy (or a form of energy) and thermal processes as the result of the motion of little particles. The result is a theory that uses strange d’s in its equations, does not produce initial value problems as we know them from the rest of physics, and introduces concepts such as exergy, enthalpy, free energy, and Gibbs free energy, we are hard put to distinguish from energy and entropy and from each other.


Thermal Process Entropy Production Heat Engine Motive Power Analogical Reasoning 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Zurich University of Applied Sciences at WinterthurWinterthurSwitzerland

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