Thermodynamic Calculation of Work for Some Irreversible Processes
The idea that thermodynamic work depends on the speed of the process is not new. The concept of reversible process carried out in a series of infinitesimal steps suggests an extremely slow process. It is generally recognized that the effective voltage of a battery decreases with increasing current, with the reversible voltage represented by the value measured at zero current. The same principle can be applied to mechanical processes. A definition of mechanical work and its application to a system confined by a piston are given.
G. L. Bertrand, "Thermodynamic Calculation of Work for Some Irreversible Processes," Journal of Chemical Education, American Chemical Society (ACS), Jan 2005.
The definitive version is available at http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/ed082p874
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