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Homework Help: Heat and work in adiabatic container

  1. Sep 10, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    Electrical current is passed through a resistor immersed in a liquid in an adiabatic container. The temperature of the liquid is varied by 1 degree Celcius. The system consists solely of the liquid. Does heat or work flow across the boundary between the system and surroundings? Justify your answer.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    Because it is an adiabatic container, heat does not flow across the boundary between the system and surroundings. So....d[tex]\Delta[/tex]U = q +w where q = 0.

    [tex]\Delta[/tex]U = w
    [tex]\Delta[/tex]U = Pext[tex]\Delta[/tex]V

    I'm having a hard trying to find the right way to explain that work is being done in physics lingo. Is it because temperature of the liquid increases the internal energy therefore work is being done?

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 10, 2009 #2


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    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Yes, and if you wanted to be more detailed you could talk about what kind of work is being done and the nature of the "force" that is doing work.
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