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Semester 1

Thermodynamics (PHYS09021)


Physics and Astronomy





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Course Summary

**** This course is for Visiting Students who are here for semester 1 only and students from the School of Geosciences; please ensure students are enrolled on the correct instance. Fully registered students and visiting students who are registered for the full year, please see the new course Thermal Physics (PHYS09061). Visiting students who are registered for semester two only, please see course Statistical Mechanics (PHYS09019) ****An introduction to equilibrium thermodynamics. The First and Second laws of thermodynamics are introduced, along with the concepts of temperature, internal energy, heat, entropy and the thermodynamic potentials. Applications of thermodynamic concepts to topics such as heat engines, the expansion of gases and changes of phase are considered. The Third Law, and associated properties of entropy, complete the course.

Course Description

* Concepts: State variables and state functions, temperature scales and some useful mathematics.* Reversible and irreversible processes* Ideal and non-ideal fluids* Cyclic processes, heat engines, Carnot's theorem and its corollaries.* Entropy* Maxwell relations and analytic thermodynamics* Phase transitions: discontinuous, continuous, and non symmetry-breaking.* The 3rd law* The application of thermodynamics to different physical systems including examples from astrophysics and superconductivity* Chemical potential and open systems

Assessment Information

Written Exam 80%, Coursework 20%, Practical Exam 0%

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