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Compression and Expansion of Gases


Isothermal and Isentropic processes
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The relationship between pressure and density when compressing or expanding gases depends on the nature of the process.
isothermal
isentropic or adiabatic
polytropic

Isothermal Compression/Expansion Processes


If a compression or expansion takes place under constant temperature conditions - the process is said to be isothermal. The isothermal process can
with the Ideal Gas Law be expressed as
p / = constant (1)
where
p = absolute pressure
= density
The isothermal process can also be expressed as
pV = constant (1a)
or
p1V1 = p2V2 (1b)
where
V = gas volume (m 3, ft3...)
suffix1 denotes initial conditions and suffix2 denotes final conditions

Isentropic (or adiabatic) Compression/Expansion Processes


If a compression or expansion of a gas takes place with no flow of heat energy either into or out of the gas - the process is said to be isentropic or
adiabatic. The isentropic (adiabatic) process can be expressed with the Ideal Gas Law as
p / k = constant (2)
where
k = cp / cv - the ratio of specific heats - the ratio of specific heat at constant pressure - cp - to the specific heat at constant volume - cv
The isentropic or adiabatic process can also be expressed as
pVk= constant (2a)
or
p1V1k = p2V2k (2b)

Polytropic Compression/Expansion Process


An isothermal process must occur very slowly to keep the temperature in the gas constant. The adiabatic process must occur very rapidly without
any flow of energy in or out of the system. In practice most expansion and compression processes are somewhere in between, or said to be
polytropic.
The polytropic process can be expressed as
pVn= constant (3a)
or
p1V1n = p2V2n (3b)

where
n = polytropic index or exponent (ranging 1 to 1.4)
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Related Topics
Fluid Mechanics - The study of fluids - liquids and gases. Involves various properties of the fluid, such as velocity, pressure, density and
temperature, as functions of space and time.

Related Documents
Ideal Gas Law - In perfect or ideal gas the change in density is directly related to the change of temperature and pressure as expressed by
the Ideal Gas Law
Density, Specific Weight and Specific Gravity - An introduction and definition of density, specific weight and specific gravity - formulas
with examples
Isentropic Flow - Constant entropy flow is called isentropic flow
Pressure - Introduction to pressure - relationship psi and Pa- online pressure units converter
Gases - Specific Heats and Individual Gas Constants - Specific heat at constant volume, specific heat capacity at constant pressure and
individual gas constant - R - common gases as argon, air, ether, nitrogen and many more ..
Gases - Ratios of Specific Heat - Heat capacity of a gas in a constant pressure process - to heat capacity in a constant volume process
Molecular Weight - Gases and Vapors - Molecular mass of common gases and vapors

Tag Search
en: fluid mechanics isothermal isentropic adiabatic polytropic processes

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