The Second Law of Thermodynamics - Holistic Reasoning and Generalization: It Can Be Challenged, But Cannot Be Violated!
Entropy can be decreased, but cannot be destroyed!
Exploring the Second Law of Thermodynamics (Editor: M. Kostic) * Editorial > NIUToday

The 2nd Law is not about disorder and probability per se (or any other math or physics 'tools' per se used to describe it), but about spontaneous, forced-tendency (natural process-forcing displacement) of mass-energy redistribution in certain, irreversible direction (process driving force), from higher to lower energy-potential (mass-energy density in space). Spontaneity implies forced-directionality and in turn irreversibility. No spontaneous, irreversible process could ever be completely reversed or undone. For example, the driving force for life on Earth is the irreversible dissipation of energy from the Sun.

"Nothing occurs locally, nor globally in the universe, without mass-energy exchange/conversion and entropy production. It is crystal-clear (to me) that all confusions related to the far-reaching fundamental Laws of Thermodynamics, and especially the Second Law (Abstract-CiteSeerX), are due to the lack of their genuine and subtle comprehension." > Sadi Carnot's Reflections <*> Clausius Theory of Heat < Elusive Nature of Entropy Force or Forcing is a process of exchanging useful-energy (directional, forced mass-energy displacement) with net-zero exchange at forced equilibrium. The Second Law provides conditions and limits for process forcing (energy exchange direction and limit). The miracles are until they are comprehended and understood. > Perpetual Motion Machines (PMMs) and The Fundamental Laws of Thermodynamics and Nature*Presentations*Nature of Thermal and Mechanical Energy Transfer*Reflections and Thermodynamic probability p=W (Wahrscheinlichkeit, the German word for probability)

Definition of The 2nd Law: The useful-energy (non-equilibrium work potential) cannot be created from within equilibrium alone or otherwise, it only can be transferred between systems (ideally conserved) and irreversibly dissipated towards equilibrium into thermal energy thus generating entropy. Therefore, entropy is transferred and can be reduced (locally) but cannot be destroyed (anywhere): entropy is always and everywhere (locally and integrally) generated or produced.* dS=dStr+dSgen=dQrev/Tb + dWloss/Tdiss *Irr. Cycle Work Loss*IrRev.Eq. Abstract>Harvard & FULL paper* Entropy & the 2nd Law Special Issue-PDF>( in NIU Today: Kostic named Guest-Editor of Entropy journal (png)>&2T

... CLICK to enlarge ... <<CLICK to Presentations and to enlarge *Images>*Reflections *

To 'scoop' the useful-energy (for use or storage) require forcing by transferring the useful-energy from elsewhere or even more since in part it will be dissipated (converted) into thermal energy with generation of entropy. It cannot be 'scooped' from within an equilibrium alone nor obtained more than transferred, thus resulting in impossible entropy destruction (i.e., a wishful process without due forcing). Violating the 2nd Law is the same as lifting more weight than appropriate with the “mechanical advantage” lever or superseding “thermal (Carnot) advantage,” i.e., any “energy advantage” device: the useful-energy or work-potential (non-equilibrium) cannot be created but only transferred between, with dissipation (thus partially or fully lost with entropy generation within interacting system/s), and only in ideal limit conserved.* Self-generation of non-equilibrium (work potential), from within an equilibrium or beyond its transfer locally, will amount to self-forcing from nowhere, like self-compression without boundary work transfer (a wishful, boundary self-forcing). A process forcing require transfer of non-equilibrium (the two are cause-and effect, force-flux phenomena) which ideally could be conserved, but is always accompanied with dissipation regardless of the amount (heat & entropy generation, i.e., conversion of other energy types to thermal energy).

Entropy cannot be destroyed by any means but is always generated (or produced): Entropy is associated with thermal energy-heat and is generated when heat is generated or irreversibly transferred, otherwise, entropy is transferred and conserved in reversible processes, including reversible heat transfer (at infinitesimally small temperature difference). Even when heat is “reduced” by conversion to work, entropy cannot be destroyed (reduced) but is conserved in ideal Carnot and reversible heat engine cycles, and generated during any irreversibility (conversion of any work potential to heat). The entropy transfer is equal to reversible heat transfer per absolute temperature since work transfer is not associated with entropy (e.g., reversible compression/expansion); thus, entropy is conserved during reversible processes of any kind, generated due to irreversibility of any kind, and cannot be destroyed by any process, since the latter will imply spontaneous generation of non-equilibrium, including from within equilibrium, thus against the spontaneous forcing. [dS=dStr+dSgen=dQrev/Tb + dWloss/Tdiss ]
*Reflections* See also Entropy Definition

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More at *SLT2011>Abstract>FULL paper&IG-Carnot* Photos;*Presentations>FIGs.(X)&Abstract-DissectingSPEAKING Enquiry *Kostic's Keynote in China *Entropy(G&T)&Clausius-InEq *Entropy-Book>A>A2*Reflections*Thermo is-NOT Info*E&L* Irreversibility and Entropy generation: Gouy-Stodola Theorem Entropy & 2nd Law Special Issue 1 (PDF) & Special Issue 2 (PDFEntropy Generation Editorial* NIUToday >More...

The phenomenological Laws of Thermodynamics have much wider, including philosophical significance and implication, than their simple expressions based on the experimental observations – they are The Fundamental Laws of Nature: The Zeroth (equilibrium existentialism), The First (conservational transformationalism), The Second (irreversible-directional transformationalism), and The Third (unattainability of 'emptiness'). They are defining and unifying our comprehension of all existence and transformations in the universe. The forces, due to non-equilibrium of mass-energy in space (non-uniform ‘concentrations’), causing the mass-energy displacement, thus defining the process direction, are manifested by tendency of mass-energy transfer in time towards common equilibrium. It should not be confused with local creation of non-equilibrium and/or ‘organized structures’ on expense of ‘over-all’ non-equilibrium, by spontaneous and irreversible conversion (dissipation) of other energy forms into the thermal energy, always and everywhere accompanied with entropy generation (randomized equi-partition of energy per absolute temperature level). The fundamental laws of nature are considered to be axiomatic and many believe they could not be explained, proven or questioned. However, everything may and should be questioned, reasoned, explained and possibly proven. The miracles are until they are comprehended and understood.

* The 2nd Law defines forced directional displacement of useful/available mass-energy transfer in time, thus all processes, from higher to lower energy density/potential, due to its non-equilibrium (non-uniformity) in space, towards equilibrium (force-flux cause-and-effect phenomena), while part of the energy (up to the whole) is irreversibly converted to thermal energy (dissipated via heat) and thereby generated entropy, equal to the generated thermal energy per absolute temperature. The process cannot proceed spontaneously in opposite direction against the forcing and thus create non-equilibrium and destroy entropy, however the non-equilibrium (useful energy or work potential which is cause of process forcing) could be re-arranged/transferred and in limit conserved (in reversible processes, including forcing advantage potential). The original Clausius and Kelvin-Plank statements are the special cases related to the thermo-mechanical energy conversions. Due to reversible equivalency of all types of (coupled) energy conversions, all different statements of the Second Law (2nd Law) are equivalent...also...and.

   There is 'energy' (or 'mass-energy' as the building block of all existence) which is conserved while transferred during forced interactive displacement (subject of the First Law of Thermodynamics: energy cannot be destroyed nor generated from nowhere; and, there is 'useful energy' or 'work potential' as measure of non-equilibrium (an autonomous concept) which is the cause-end-effect of forcing energy transfer (all processes) from higher to lower energy density/potential (subject of the Second Law of Thermodynamics: non-equilibrium is irreversibly dissipated/lost in time towards equilibrium and cannot be generated from nowhere, i.e., the useful work potential is irreversibly converted to heat, and thus entropy is always generated, only in limit it may be conserved but cannot be destroyed, the latter not to be confused with local entropy decrease on the expense of increase elsewhere).

    During forced energy transfer a part (and ultimately all) of the useful energy is dissipated (irreversibly converted to thermal energy with the corresponding entropy generation), but in limit, the non-equilibrium (work potential) may be conserved during reversible processes, including localized increase of energy potential on the expense of decrease elsewhere (forcing advantage). See also Perpetual Motion Machines.

There is no such thing as a unidirectional force or a force that acts on one body only (no imaginary boundary vector-forces). Put it very simply: a forcing (force-flux cause-and-effect phenomena) acts between an interface of pair of objects (forced interaction: action-reaction, including process-inertial forces), and not on a single object. The Newton Laws and the Laws of Thermodynamics imply that all forces are mass-energy interactions (forced displacements with momentum and energy transfer and conservation) between different particulate bodies due to non-equilibrium (available energy or work potential, cause of forcing) towards the equilibrium.
►Mass-energy is directionally displaced/transferred from its higher to lower density/potential while conserved in time due to forced displacement caused by its non-equilibrium (non-uniform) distribution in space, in an irreversible process approaching equilibrium until its distribution equalize in all directions (equi-partition of mass-energy).

It is reasoned and deduced < > that the Second Law (2nd Law) is universally valid for all space and time scales, and without exceptions. During forced interactions (thus all processes) the momentum and energy are conserved at local scale and therefore at any integral space and time scales. However the momentum and energy are spatially redistributed in time and the latter directionally equi-partitioned into ‘randomized’ thermal energy (dissipated as heat) giving rise to irreversible generation of thermal energy per absolute temperature, known as entropy. In reality entropy is always generated (in part or in whole) within locality of system structure, while otherwise and in limit it is conserved during reversible processes (without energy dissipation), but entropy cannot be destroyed since it will imply creation of non-equilibrium from nowhere or from within an equilibrium alone, thus defying the existence of equilibrium.

Organization/creation of technical (man-made) and natural (including life) structures and thus creation of "local non-equilibrium" is possible and is always happening in many technical and natural processes while entropy is generated (never destroyed), using another functional structures (channeling/filtering, pumping, tools, hardware/software templates, information-knowledge-"intelligent" templates, DNAs, etc.), HOWEVER, the mass-energy flow/transfer within those structures will always and everywhere dissipate energy and generate entropy (according to the 2nd Law!), i.e. on the expense of internal and/or surrounding/boundary systems' non-equilibrium. It may appear that the created non-equilibrium structures are self-organizing from nowhere, from within an equilibrium (thus violating the 2nd Law), due to the lack of proper observations and "accounting" of all mass-energy flows, the latter maybe in "stealth" form or undetected rate at our state of technology and comprehension (as the science history has though us many times). The miracles are until we comprehend and explain them!

The phenomenological Laws of Thermodynamics and Nature have been my intense curiosity (bordering to obsession) since my first course in Thermodynamics, more than tree decades ago. The interest rejuvenated about a decade ago when I have started writing more about energy fundamentals while at a NASA Research Center and later at Fermi and Argonne National Laboratories, while on my Sabbatical and being involved with Nanofluids research, respectively. I have been reasoning the phenomena leading to the proofs of the Laws since 2006 and the culmination of the activities related to the Second Law came recently while preparing for and attending the "Symposium on the Second Law of Thermodynamics: Status and Challenges" within wider The 92nd Annual Meeting of the Pacific Division of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), at University of San Diego, San Diego, CA, June 14-15, 2011.

Click to enlarge & more...-2L -E -S- G- SR -CvKP see also: 2nd Law AAAS Symposium Definitions of Energy, Entropy & The 2nd Law ... Click to enlarge ... Click to enlarge Click to enlarge ... Click to enlarge*SLT-P8M Click to enlarge ...

The Second Law Symposium has been a unique gathering of the unorthodox physicist and inventors (to avoid using a stronger word), who have been poised to challenge and if possible 'bury' the Second Law. My intuition and conventional wisdom, while keeping the mind open, have been telling me that the challenges must have specific physical faults, but some challengers have been 'insisting' on "the proof" that the Second Law could not be violated, not just having a statement based on experiential evidence of not observing otherwise. It has been a daunting challenge and motivation for me (thank you for invitation - what a stimulating time for me!) with intense focused-thinking and reasoning to resolve the challenges as described in my presentation and paper to be published in the AIP Symposium's proceedings: "Revisiting The Second Law of Energy Degradation and Entropy Generation: From Sadi Carnot’s Ingenious Reasoning to Holistic Generalization"-Abstract (right-click and save the linked PDF file on your local drive, see also NIU Brief and PPT Presentation). See also Kostic's Second Law Seminar at University of Illinois at Chicago and the Keynote Lectures at Tsinghua University in China.

After attending the Symposium and interacting (as an engineering Thermodynamicist) with unwavering physicist and inventors, helped me understand better the investigators' effort to harvest energy using innovative ways, while 'bravely' believing in violation of the Second Law, based on a fact that they have been successful in achieving a thermal non-equilibrium (hot and cold non-uniformity) using innovative and creative methods and processes, and hoping to utilize it to produce energy from the environment, as a single thermal reservoir. However, with all due respect, nobody has been successful to achieve sustained conversion of environmental thermal energy to work (cyclic or otherwise) nor to provide reliable evidence (comprehensive energy and entropy 'accounting') of achieving a sustainable over-all process efficiency higher than the Carnot's (which is zero-impossible from only a single thermal reservoir). For sustainable work production, there will be a need for maintaining a local thermal non-equilibrium by continuous consumption of external energy or stored energy within, with efficiency below the Carnot's. After all, the Second Law is related to a working process direction (towards equilibrium) and its limitation (degradation up to conservation, but not spontaneous creation of non-equilibrium - generation down to conservation, but not destruction of entropy; just achieving a non-equilibrium state is not a violation of the Law). Furthermore, the 'wishful' Maxwell's Demon could not be utilized since 1867.

I will be posting additional reasoning to justify the universal validity of the Second Law (with rigorous reasoning and thus proving the 2nd Law cause-and-effect phenomena). I would also appreciate receiving any question and constructive criticism and will try to provide my honest responses.

San Diego 2011 Symposium (PDF ...more>Abstract & M. Kostic's paper), more 2nd Law Presentations, and San Diego 2011 Photos (below):

See also All About Entropy by B. Kyle, and The Law of the Jungle (N.K.Borsuk)