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Understanding of Entropy. Been thinking about it for 2 days and couldn't understand

  1. Mar 20, 2012 #1

    My name is Brad and I am a graduate electrical engineering student. Recently I wanted to go back and review and patch some holes in my head about fundamentals of physics. Therefore, I went back to my textbook Physics for Scientists and Engineers with Modern Physics by Serwey and Jewett, 7th ed. I wanted to understand a few questions I had about thermodynamics from years ago, and more specifically, about entropy.

    In the text, it states that entropy is a state variable; therefore, we can find some path of reversible process that leads from one state to the next to calculate it. It never stated why it is a state variable or why the reversible path will work for irreversible or real processes. I can certainly calculate it. However, my understanding about this particular section is frustratingly vague. Please enlighten me Q_Q... Thank you.

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 21, 2012 #2


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  4. Mar 21, 2012 #3
    Re: Understanding of Entropy. Been thinking about it for 2 days and couldn't understa

    i guess entropy of the total universe if not reversible, but entropy of a particular system is reversible.

    so if you made your desk messy, you can make it tidy again in a completely reversible fashion, but in the process introducing more entropy into the universe.
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