Thermal Physics revision notes (a Windermere School resource)

These Thermal Physics revision notes can help HL students revise the entire HL Thermal Physics part of the IB HL Physics syllabus. Please use them. Thanks to the '' for assisting with providing some of the content.

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Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics
If body A is in thermal equilibrium with body B and body A is also in thermal
equilibrium with body C then body B will be in thermal equilibrium with body C.

Converting Celsius to Kelvin
0°C = 273K

Why a Gas Exerts a Pressure

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Mechanisms for Heat Transfer
The three basic mechanisms of energy transfer are Conduction, Convection, and Radiation.

The Rate of Flow of Energy (Q/t) is directly proportional to the
temperature gradient (T) causing heat flow, and the Area (A) of the
solid, and is inversely proportional to the length (l)…

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Boyle's Law
Boyle's Law states that the Pressure of a fixed mass of gas at
constant temperature is inversely proportional to its volume.

Gases Doing Work
The Work Done on or by a gas can be described by

Work Done on/by a Gas
When the volume of a gas increases,…

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Heat Engines
w is the net work done by the engine
QH is the energy taken from the Heat Reservoir
QC is the energy given to the Heat Sink
TH is the Temperature (in K) of the Heat Reservoir
TC is the Temperature (in K) of the Heat Sink


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