Thermodynamics at Very Long Time and Space Scales

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Any observation, and hence concept, is limited by the time and length scale of the observer and his instruments. Originally, we lived on a timescale of minutes and a length scale of meters, give or take an order of magnitude or two. Therefore, we devloped laboratory sized concepts, like volume, pressure, and temperature of continuous media. The past 150 years we managed to observe on the molecular scale and similarly nanoseconds timescale, leading to atomic physics that requires new concepts. In this paper, we are moving in the opposite direction, to extremely large time and length scales. We call this regime "slow time". Here, we explore which laboratory concepts still apply in slow time and which new ones may emerge. E.g., we find that temperature no longer exists and that a new component of entropy emerges from long time averaging of other quantities. Just as finite-time thermodynamics developed from the small additional constraint of a finite process duration, here we add a small new condition, the very long timescale that results in a loss of temporal resolution, and again look for new structure.

Udgave nummer10
Antal sider8
StatusUdgivet - 28 okt. 2020

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