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Thermodynamics Thermodynamics is the study of heart and its transformation into mechanical energy. It bypasses the molecular details of systems and focuses on the macroscopic levels of mechanical work, pressure, temperature, and their roles in energy transformation. Coined by the British physicist Lord Kelvin, the scale of thermodynamics is measured in units of "K". Zero K, or -273˚ C, would represent absolute zero. Absolute zero is the temperature at which no more energy can be extracted from a substance and no further lowering of its temperature is possible. When a substance reaches 0K, the particles of the atoms have little to no kinetic movement, and the temperature reaches a lower limit. The first law of thermodynamics is that whenever heat is added to a system, the heat transforms into an equal amount of some other form of energy. The equation representing this specific law is as follows: heat added equals the increase in internal energy plus external work done by the …show more content…
Rubbing our hands together for warmth and rubbing two pieces of wood together to start a fire are two ways of converting work into heat. However, converting heat into work is not so easy. This process needs to be aided with a heat engine. A heat engine is any device that changes internal energy into mechanical work. According to Hewitt, "The basic idea behind a heat engine, whether a steam engine, internal combustion engine, or jet engine, is that mechanical work can be obtained only when heat flows from a high temperature to a low temperature (Hewitt 475)." However, all the heat from the high temperature is not converted into work. Some heat flows into work, but most is in lost low temperature. If we wanted to know how much heat can be converted into work, we would have to find the Carnot efficiency. The Carnot efficiency of a heat engine is the ideal maximum percentage of input energy that the engine can convert to

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