Blog: Illusionary Reversible Work

A New Thermodynamics

By Kent W. Mayhew

Illusionary Reversible Work: A Traditional Big Mistake 

It should be stated that often isothermal work as defined in terms of the expanding system parameters i.e

  W= [(NkT)In(Vf/Vi)]sys     is too often mistakenly considered as being reversible work in thermodynamics.

for example see:

      1) http://www.Socratic.org/questions/what-is-reversible-isothermal-expansion.html

      2) http://www.chemistry-desk.blogspot.com/2011/051/isothermal-reversible-expansion-work-of.html

     3) http://www.hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/thermo/isothermal.html

 The above perversion of logic clearly demonstrates how traditional thermodynamics continues to put the cart ahead of the horse.As was discussed in the Parameters Blog, this is simply wrong because the work done by an expanding system is lost work onto the surrounding atmosphere i.e. work is done external to the expanding system, as defined by the exact differential: W=(PdV)atm= PatmdVsys  

There are those who realize that work is lost onto the surroundings but they fail to understand that this is Lost work.





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