ERIC Number: EJ935044
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Abstractor: As Provided
Ehrenfest's Lottery--Time and Entropy Maximization
Ashbaugh, Henry S.
Chemical Engineering Education, v44 n3 p229-235 Sum 2010
Successful teaching of the Second Law of Thermodynamics suffers from limited simple examples linking equilibrium to entropy maximization. I describe a thought experiment connecting entropy to a lottery that mixes marbles amongst a collection of urns. This mixing obeys diffusion-like dynamics. Equilibrium is achieved when the marble distribution is uniform and the entropy is maximized. I also show the ideal gas law results from the entropy change when the number of urns is increased.
Descriptors: Thermodynamics, Scientific Concepts, Science Instruction, College Science, Scientific Principles, Energy, Chemistry, Time
Chemical Engineering Education, Chemical Engineering Division of ASEE. P.O. Box 142097, Gainesville, FL 32614. Tel: 352-392-0861; Fax: 352-392-0861; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://cee.che.ufl.edu/index.html
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A