Basics of Thermodynamics

Thermodynamics is a branch of physics which I believe everyone should study for at least a short period of time. It is at once so simple that intuitively most people already understand it without any formal education yet at the same time so complex that some of the nuances escape graduate students who specifically study the topic.I’m a little biased in my appreciation of thermodynamics as it was/is a relatively large part of my educational background – metallurgical modeling and chemical engineering heavily relies on thermodynamics. Because of my interest in thermodynamics, I’ve decided that I will make multiple posts explaining the basics of thermodynamics while giving examples that may (or not) interest whoever is reading this site.

So allow me to finish this post with a relatively famous quote:

“A theory is the more impressive the greater the simplicity of its premises, the more different kinds of things it relates, and the more extended its area of applicability. Therefore the deep impression that classical thermodynamics made upon me. It is the only physical theory of universal content which I am convinced will never be overthrown, within the framework of applicability of its basic concepts.” -Albert Einstein