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Dissipation effects in mechanics and thermodynamics

Authors: J. Güémez, M. Fiolhais

Ref.: European Journal of Physics 37, 045101-(15pp) (2016)

Abstract: With the discussion of three examples, we aim at clarifying the concept of energy transfer associated with dissipation in mechanics and in thermodynamics. The dissipation effects due to dissipative forces, such as the friction force between solids or the drag force in motions in fluids, lead to an internal energy increase of the system and/or to heat transfer to the surroundings. This heat flow is consistent with the second law, which states that the entropy of the universe should increase when those forces are present because of the irreversibility always associated with their actions. As far as mechanics is concerned, the effects of the dissipative forces are included in Newton’s equations as impulses and pseudo-works.

DOI: doi:10.1088/0143-0807/37/4/045101