Activities
Students consider the change in internal energy during three different processes involving a container of water vapor on a stove. Using the 1st Law of Thermodynamics, students reason about how the internal energy would change and then compare this prediction with data from NIST presented as a contour plot.
Students are placed into small groups and asked to create an experimental setup they can use to measure the partial derivative they are given, in which entropy changes.
These are notes, essentially the equation sheet, from the final review session for https://paradigms.oregonstate.edu/courses/ph441.
Problem
The Gibbs free energy, \(G\), is given by \begin{align*} G = U + pV - TS. \end{align*}
- Find the total differential of \(G\). As always, show your work.
- Interpret the coefficients of the total differential \(dG\) in order to find a derivative expression for the entropy \(S\).
- From the total differential \(dG\), obtain a different thermodynamic derivative that is equal to \[ \left(\frac{\partial {S}}{\partial {p}}\right)_{T} \]
Problem
You are given the following Gibbs free energy: \begin{equation*} G=-k T N \ln \left(\frac{a T^{5 / 2}}{p}\right) \end{equation*} where \(a\) is a constant (whose dimensions make the argument of the logarithm dimensionless).
Compute the entropy.
Work out the heat capacity at constant pressure \(C_p\).
Find the connection among \(V\), \(p\), \(N\), and \(T\), which is called the equation of state (Hint: find the volume as a partial derivative of the Gibbs free energy).
- Compute the internal energy \(U\).
These lecture notes from the ninth week of https://paradigms.oregonstate.edu/courses/ph441 cover phase transformations, the Clausius-Clapeyron relation, mean field theory and more. They include a number of small group activities.
These lecture notes covering week 8 of https://paradigms.oregonstate.edu/courses/ph441 include a small group activity in which students derive the Carnot efficiency.
This lecture introduces the idea of entropy, including the relationship between entropy and multiplicity as well as the relationship between changes in entropy and heat.
In this remote-friendly activity, students use a microwave oven (and optionally a thermometer) to measure the latent heat of melting for water (and optionally the heat capacity). From these they compute changes in entropy. See also Ice Calorimetry Lab.
Students generate a list of properties a glass of water might have. The class then discusses and categorizes those properties.
This very quick lecture reviews the content taught in https://paradigms.oregonstate.edu/courses/ph423, and is the first content in https://paradigms.oregonstate.edu/courses/ph441.
Student groups design an experiment that measures an assigned partial derivative. In a compare-and-contrast wrap-up, groups report on how they would measure their derivatives.
Consider a thin charged rod of length \(L\) standing along the \(z\)-axis with the bottom end on the \(x,y\)-plane. The charge density \(\lambda_0\) is constant. Find the total flux of the electric field through a closed cubical surface with sides of length \(3L\) centered at the origin.
Instructions for 2022: You will need to complete this assignment in a 15 minute appointment on Zoom or in person with one of the members of the teaching team between 1/21 and 10 pm on 1/26. Here is a link to a sign-up page.
You are required to watch a sample video for how to make symmetry arguments here. As demonstrated in the video you should bring with you to the meeting a cylinder, an observer, and a vector.
Use good symmetry arguments to find the possible direction for the electric field due to a charged wire. Also, use good symmetry arguments to find the possible functional dependence of the electric field due to a charged wire. Rather than writing this up to turn in, you should find a member of the teaching team and make the arguments to them verbally.
(Use the equation for orbit shape.) Gain experience with unusual force laws.
In science fiction movies, characters often talk about a spaceship “spiralling in” right before it hits the planet. But all orbits in a \(1/r^2\) force are conic sections, not spirals. This spiralling in happens because the spaceship hits atmosphere and the drag from the atmosphere changes the shape of the orbit. But, in an alternate universe, we might have other force laws.
In class, we discussed how to calculate the shape of the orbit for an inverse square potential. More generally, the equation for the orbit of a mass \(\mu\) under the influence of a central force \(f(r)\) is given by: \begin{align} \frac{d^2 u}{d\phi^2} + u &=-\frac{\mu}{\ell^2}\frac{1}{u^2}f\left(\frac{1}{u}\right)\\ \Rightarrow f\left(\frac{1}{u}\right)&=-\frac{\ell^2}{\mu}u^2 \left(\frac{d^2 u}{d\phi^2} + u\right) \end{align} where \(u=r^{-1}\).
Find the force law for a mass \(\mu\), under the influence of a central-force field, that moves in a logarithmic spiral orbit given by \(r = ke^{\alpha \phi}\), where \(k\) and \(\alpha\) are constants.
- (4pts) Find the electric field around a finite, uniformly charged, straight rod, at a point a distance \(s\) straight out from the midpoint, starting from Coulomb's Law.
- (4pts) Find the electric field around an infinite, uniformly charged, straight rod, starting from the result for a finite rod.
Problem
For an infinitesimally thin cylindrical shell of radius \(b\) with uniform surface charge density \(\sigma\), the electric field is zero for \(s<b\) and \(\vec{E}= \frac{\sigma b}{\epsilon_0 s}\, \hat s\) for \(s > b\). Use the differential form of Gauss' Law to find the charge density everywhere in space.
The internal energy of helium gas at temperature \(T\) is to a very good approximation given by \begin{align} U &= \frac32 Nk_BT \end{align}
Consider a very irreversible process in which a small bottle of helium is placed inside a large bottle, which otherwise contains vacuum. The inner bottle contains a slow leak, so that the helium leaks into the outer bottle. The inner bottle contains one tenth the volume of the outer bottle, which is insulated. What is the change in temperature when this process is complete? How much of the helium will remain in the small bottle?
Write Newton's 2nd Law for a single mass.
Notes:
LG 2024: I added the Euler-Lagrange equation as an example of a generalized statement of Newton's 2nd Law. I'm planning on using a Lagrangian approach for the 2-body problem.
Students compute a vector line integral, then investigate whether this integral is path independent.
In this small group activity, students work out the steady state temperature of an object absorbing and emitting blackbody radiation.
Students work in small groups to use the superposition principle \[V(\vec{r}) = \frac{1}{4\pi\epsilon_0}\sum_i \frac{q_i}{\vert\vec{r}-\vec{r}_i\vert}\] to find the electrostatic potential \(V\) everywhere in space due to a pair of charges (either identical charges or a dipole). Different groups are assigned different arrangements of charges and different regions of space to consider: either on the axis of the charges or in the plane equidistant from the two charges, for either small or large values of the relevant geometric variable. Each group is asked to find a power series expansion for the electrostatic potential, valid in their group's assigned region of space. The whole class wrap-up discussion then compares and contrasts the results and discuss the symmetries of the two cases.
Students work in small groups to use the Biot-Savart law \[\vec{B}(\vec{r}) =\frac{\mu_0}{4\pi}\int\frac{\vec{J}(\vec{r}^{\,\prime})\times \left(\vec{r}-\vec{r}^{\,\prime}\right)}{\vert \vec{r}-\vec{r}^{\,\prime}\vert^3} \, d\tau^{\prime}\] to find an integral expression for the magnetic field, \(\vec{B}(\vec{r})\), due to a spinning ring of charge.
In an optional extension, students find a series expansion for \(\vec{B}(\vec{r})\) either on the axis or in the plane of the ring, for either small or large values of the relevant geometric variable. Add an extra half hour or more to the time estimate for the optional extension.
Students work in small groups to use Coulomb's Law \[\vec{E}(\vec{r}) =\frac{1}{4\pi\epsilon_0}\int\frac{\rho(\vec{r}^{\,\prime})\left(\vec{r}-\vec{r}^{\,\prime}\right)}{\vert \vec{r}-\vec{r}^{\,\prime}\vert^3} \, d\tau^{\prime}\] to find an integral expression for the electric field, \(\vec{E}(\vec{r})\), everywhere in space, due to a ring of charge.
In an optional extension, students find a series expansion for \(\vec{E}(\vec{r})\) either on the axis or in the plane of the ring, for either small or large values of the relevant geometric variable. Add an extra half hour or more to the time estimate for the optional extension.
Students work out heat and work for rectangular paths on \(pV\) and \(TS\) plots. This gives with computing heat and work, applying the First Law, and recognizing that internal energy is a state function, which cannot change after a cyclic process.
Students consider projectile motion of an object that experiences drag force that in linear with the velocity. Students consider the horizontal motion and the vertical motion separately. Students solve Newton's 2nd law as a differential equation.
This very short lecture introduces Wein's displacement law.
This small group activity has students reasoning about how the Planck distribution shifts when the temperature is doubled. This leads to a qualitative argument for the Stefan-Boltzmann law.
Students solve numerically for the potential due to a spherical shell of charge. Although this potential is straightforward to compute using Gauss's Law, it serves as a nice example for numerically integrating in spherical coordinates because the correct answer is easy to recognize.
This lab gives students a chance to take data on the first day of class (or later, but I prefer to do it the first day of class). It provides an immediate context for thermodynamics, and also gives them a chance to experimentally measure a change in entropy. Students are required to measure the energy required to melt ice and raise the temperature of water, and measure the change in entropy by integrating the heat capacity.
This short small group activity introduces students to the Leibniz notation used for partial derivatives in thermodynamics, in which the variables being held constant are given explicitly. Students are guided to associate variables to their proper categories.