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Pote (Patil) College of Engineering and Technology,


Engineering Thermodynamics
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Engineering Thermodynamics


Introduction to basic concepts of thermodynamics, Macroscopic and microscopic approaches, properties of
system, state and equilibrium, processes and cycle. Temperatures and Zeroth law of thermodynamics,
Quasistatic process, Forms of energy and its conversion.
Gas Laws and Ideal gas equation of states, difference between gases and vapours, equation of state, gas
constant and universal gas constant. (08 hrs).




The word thermodynamics is originated from Greek word -Therme-Heat and dynamics-Force. It is defined

The fundamental science that describes the basic laws in relation to different physical processes which
involve transfer or transformation of energy and the relationship among the different physical
properties of the substances which are affected by such processes.

The laws of nature formed by observation and common experience lay the basic frame work of

These laws are as follows-

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 2

Engineering Thermodynamics

 The Zeroth Law deals with thermal equilibrium and provides a means for measuring temperatures.

 The First Law deals with the conservation of energy and introduces the concept of internal energy.

 The Second Law of thermodynamics provides with the guidelines on the conversion of internal
energy of matter into work. It also introduces the concept of entropy.

 The Third Law of thermodynamics defines the absolute zero of entropy. The entropy of a pure
crystalline substance at absolute zero temperature is zero.


All natural processes are governed by the principles of thermodynamics. However, the following engineering
devices are typically designed based on the principles of thermodynamics.
Automotive engines, Turbines, Compressors, Pumps, Fossil and Nuclear Power Plants, Propulsion systems
for the Aircrafts, Separation and Liquefaction Plant, Refrigeration, Air-conditioning and Heating Devices.


Q: - State and explain the two different approaches in the study of thermodynamics? OR

Explain two approaches in the study of Classical and statistical thermodynamics?

OR Distinguish between a) Macroscopic and Microscopic approaches.


Thermodynamics can be studied through two different approaches:

(a) Macroscopic Approach and

(b) Microscopic Approach


Macroscopic approach is used in Classical Thermodynamics. In a macroscopic approach, a certain

quantity of matter is considered without considering the events occurring at the molecular level.
Macroscopic approach is only concerned with the effects of the action of many molecules and these effects
can be perceived by the human senses. For example macroscopic quantity pressure is the average rate of

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 3

Engineering Thermodynamics

change in momentum due to all molecular collision made on a unit area. The effect of pressure can be felt.
Macroscopic approach is not concerned with the action of individual molecules and the force on a given unit
area can be measured by using instrument for example pressure gauge. These macroscopic observations are
completely independent of the assumptions regarding the nature of matter.


Microscopic approach is used in Statistical Thermodynamics. This approach deals with the study at
individual molecular level. From the microscopic point of view matter is composed of myriads of molecules.
If it is a gas, each molecule at a given instant has a certain position, velocity and energy and for each
molecule these change frequently as a result of collision. For example suppose gas is composed of ‘n’
number of molecules. Each molecule at a certain instant has certain characteristics such as velocity,
momentum and position. Each of the molecule may be described by three coordinates x, y and z and three
components of velocity u, v and w. This means that six variables are required to described a single molecule
and to describe a system we requires 6n variables. The behavior of the gas is described by summing up the
behavior of the individual molecule. Such a study is made in Microscopic or Statistical Thermodynamics.


S.No Macroscopic Approach Microscopic Approach

In this approach analysis is concerned with In this approach analysis is concerned with structure of
gross or overall behavior of the system. matter i.e. matter consists of large number of molecules.
The properties of the system are their The properties are defined for each single molecule
average values individually.
The analysis of Microscopic approach requires advanced
The analysis of macroscopic approach
3 statistical and mathematical methods as the number of
requires simple mathematical formulae
molecules are very large.
The properties like velocity, momentum and kinetic
The properties like pressure and temperature
energy which describe the behavior of the molecules can
4 etc. are needed to describe the system can be
never be felt by our senses nor easily measured by
easily measured and felt by our senses.
In order to describe the system few Large numbers of variables are needed to describe the
properties are needed. system.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 4

Engineering Thermodynamics

University Questions: Define a thermodynamic system. Differentiate between an open, closed and
isolated system?...................................................(4 marks) OR

What is the relation between the system and surrounding when system is (i) Adiabatic

(ii) isolated (iii) Closed…………………...….(3 marks) OR

Explain with the examples, following thermodynamic terms-

i) Thermodynamic system, ii) Boundary and iii) Surrounding…… (S-08/2M)


A thermodynamic system is defined as a definite quantity of matter or a region in space upon which
attention is focused in the analysis of a problem. OR
A thermodynamic system represents a prescribed and identifiable (fixed) quantity of matter under
consideration to analyze a problem; to study the changes in its properties due to exchange of energy in the
form of heat and work.
The system may be quantity of steam, a mixture of a vapor and gas or a piston-cylinder assembly of
an IC engine and its contents.

The combination of matter and space external to the system that may be influenced by the changes in the
system is called Surrounding or Environment.

The surface which separate the system from the surrounding is called the boundary as shown in fig below,

The boundaries may be real physical surfaces or they may be imaginary for the convenience of analysis. The
interactions between a system and its surroundings, which take place across the boundary, play an important
role in thermodynamics.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 5

Engineering Thermodynamics

e.g.: If the air in the room is the system, the floor, ceiling and walls constitutes real boundaries. The plane at the
open doorway constitutes an imaginary boundary.

The boundaries may be at rest (fixed) or in motion (movable).

e.g.: If we choose a system that has a certain defined quantity of mass (such as gas contained in a piston cylinder
device) the boundaries must move in such way that they always enclose that particular quantity of mass if it
changes shape or moves from one place to another.

University Questions - What are the different Thermodynamic systems? Explain them with examples.
OR Explain the type of thermodynamic system i.e. closed, open, isolated with two examples of
each………………………………………………………………. (6 Marks).

1) CLOSED SYSTEM (Control Mass)-

A system-in which no mass is permitted to cross the system boundary and which can only exchange
energy in the form of heat and work with its environment is called Closed System. We would always consider a
closed system as a system of constant mass.

Mass Cannot Cross the boundaries of a Closed system but Energy Can

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 6

Engineering Thermodynamics

Examples:- 1) Cylinder fitted with a movable Piston:- Consider the piston cylinder device shown in the
figure. Let us say that we would like to find out what happens to the enclosed gas when it is heated. Since we
are focusing our attention on the gas, it is our system. The inner surfaces of the cylinder and piston form the
boundary, and since no mass is crossing this boundary it is closed system. Notice that energy may cross the
boundary and part of the boundary (inner surface of the piston in this case) may move. Everything outside the
gas, including the piston and cylinder is the surrounding.

2) Bomb Calorimeter: - Here electric energy crosses the boundary to cause a spark between electrodes and
initiate combustion. There is heat transfer across the boundary after combustion; however there is no mass
transfer either way.

3) Motor Car battery, Pressure Cooker, Kitchen Refrigerator, Ice cream Freezer etc.

2) OPEN SYSTEM (Control Volume)-

Open system-is one which has mass exchange with the surroundings along with transfer of energy in the
form of heat and work. The mass within the system does not necessarily remains constant; it may change
depending upon the mass inflow and outflow. OR

A control volume is a system which is defined to be a particular region of space in which matter and energy
may freely enter or leave a control volume, and thus it is an open system. An open system or control volume is
separated from its surrounding by means of a boundary known as Control Surface.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 7

Engineering Thermodynamics


Mass as well as energy Cross the boundaries of a open system

Examples:-1) Water Wheel:- It is a device that converts potential energy of water into mechanical work.
Water enters the wheel from head race side and leaves it to tail race from the other end and as such the mass
crosses the system (wheel) boundary. The work output due to rotation of the wheel also crosses the system

2) Motor Car Engine: - The engine initially draws charge (mixture of air and petrol) and finally exhausts the
gases to the surrounding atmosphere; the mass flow occurs across the system boundary.

3) Steam Generator:-Boiler is a device which converts the entering water into steam. Here content of the
system change; water flows into and steam flows out of the system.

4) Compressor, Turbine, Nozzle, Water Heater Etc.


Isolated system is a closed system in which there is no interaction of mass and energy between system and the

Neither Mass nor energy Cross the boundaries of a Isolated system

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 8

Engineering Thermodynamics

An isolated system has no interaction with the surroundings; it neither influences the surrounding nor is
influenced by it. When a system and surrounding is taken together, they constitute an isolated system.

Examples: - 1) The universe can be considered as an Isolated System and so is the fluid enclosed in a
perfectly insulated closed vessel (Thermos Flask).

2) Electric oven etc.


Based on phase change, a system may be classified as homogeneous system or heterogeneous

system. A phase represents a quantity of matter that is uniform throughout in physical structure and in
chemical composition. Physical uniformity implies that the matter is all gas, or all liquid or all solid.
Uniformity of chemical composition means that the chemical composition does not vary from one part of the
system to another. An iron piece, a liquid contained in a vessel, a gas enclosed within a container, and a mixture
of gases represents One Phase System. A system consisting of liquid and a gas is a Two Phase System of a
liquid and a gas phase. Likewise a mixture of solid, liquid and gas constitutes a Three Phase System.

A system consisting of a Single Phase is called Homogeneous System.

Ex: - 1) Ice, Water, Dry saturated steam, 2) Mixture of ammonia in water,

3) Mixture of air and water vapor, 4) Water plus nitric acid.

A system whose mass content is non-uniform throughout, i.e., it consists of more than one phase is called
Heterogeneous System.

Ex- 1) Mixture of Ice and Water, 2) Mixture of Two non-miscible liquids (water + mercury)

3) Water plus Gasoline. Etc.

University Questions: -1) Explain with the examples, following thermodynamic terms

i) Thermodynamic State and ii) Intensive and Extensive properties……………. (4 Marks)

OR Explain intensive and extensive properties with examples………………. (3 Marks)

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 9

Engineering Thermodynamics


Every system has a certain characteristics, by which its physical condition may be described; such
characteristics are called properties of the system. These are all Macroscopic in nature.

The salient aspects of a thermodynamic property:-

1) It is a measurable characteristics describing a system and helps to distinguish one system from
2) It has a definite unique value when the system is in a particular state.
3) It is dependent only on the state of the system; it does not depend on the path or route the system
follows to attain that particular state,
4) Its differential is exact.

Properties may be of two types.

1) Intensive Properties: - are independent (do not depends) on the mass in the system.
Ex-Pressure, Temperature, density, thermal conductivity, viscosity, composition, electrical potential
2) Extensive Properties: - are depends upon on the mass of the system.
Ex-Volume, Energy, mass, enthalpy, entropy, etc.

Specific extensive properties i.e. extensive properties per unit mass of the system are intensive properties.
E.g.:- Specific volume (volume/unit mass), Specific Energy (Energy/unit mass), Specific Entropy, Specific
Enthalpy etc.

An easy way to determine whether a property is Intensive or Extensive is to divide the system into the two equal
parts with an imaginary partition as shown in the figure. Each part will have same value of intensive properties
as original system but half the value of extensive properties.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 10

Engineering Thermodynamics

Define a) State b) Path c) Process and d) cycle……………………(4 Marks)


State is a condition of the system at an instant of time as described or measured by its properties. OR
Each unique condition of a system is called a State.
(Note:- VVimp- To define a state of the system, properties of the system must be uniform throughout
the system and invariant with time. In other words a state is defined for only equilibrium condition. It follows
from the definition of State that each property has a single value at each state when system is in equilibrium.
Examples:- Consider a system constituted by gas enclosed in the piston cylinder assembly of a reciprocating
machine. Corresponding the position of the piston at any instant, the condition of the system will be given by
pressure, volume and temperature of the gas. When all such properties have a definite value, the system is said
to exist at a definite STATE).

University Questions: - What do you mean by thermodynamic equilibrium? Explain how does it differ
from thermal equilibrium……………….……………. (4 Marks) OR
What criteria system should satisfy for it to be in a state of thermodynamic
equilibrium?.................................................................(3 Marks) OR
Define Chemical, Mechanical and Thermal Equilibriums?............... (S-07/ 3 M)

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 11

Engineering Thermodynamics

Thermodynamic Equilibrium: - A system which is in a state of mechanical equilibrium, thermal equilibrium

and chemical equilibrium is said to be in a state of Thermodynamic equilibrium.
1) Mechanical Equilibrium: - (Condition of uniform pressure)
Condition or state in which there is no unbalanced force exists within the system and nor at its
boundaries is called Mechanical Equilibrium. Mechanical equilibrium implies uniformity of pressure i.e. there
is only one value of pressure for the entire system.
2) Chemical equilibrium: - Condition or state in which no chemical reaction takes place in the system and the
chemical composition which is same throughout the system does not vary with time is called Chemical
3) Thermal Equilibrium; - Condition or state of the system in which temperature of the system does not
change with time and has same value at all points of the system.

University Questions: - State the terms related with thermodynamics i) Process ii) Cyclic Process…..
(4 Marks) OR Explain various thermodynamic processes on P-V plot……………. (4 Marks)
PROCESS........................................................................................................................ (2 Marks)
Any operation in which one or more properties of a system changes is called as change of state. The
locus of the series of states through which a system passes in going from initial state to its final state constitutes
the Path of change of state. When the path is completely specified is called Process.
Any change that a system undergoes from one equilibrium state to another is called Process.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 12

Engineering Thermodynamics

CYCLE OR CYCLIC PROCESS……………………………………………………. (2 Marks)

A system is said to have undergone a cycle if it returns to its initial state at the end of the process. That
is, for the cycle the initial and final states are identical.
Example- Steam (water) that circulates in steam power plant undergoes a cycle.

Q:- Define reversible and irreversible process and discuss causes of irreversibility…(4 Marks)
We already seen that a system remains in a state of equilibrium only if-
1) We make it isolated from the surrounding i.e. no interactions of the system with the surrounding and
2) If the properties of the system and surrounding are same. i.e. system is in dead state.
But in general practice the system always interacts with the surrounding and occurs in a non-equilibrium
state and in such cases since we know a State is defined for only equilibrium condition we make the non-
equilibrium system tends to cause it processes in an equilibrium form.
(A) Quasi-Static Process or Quasi-Equilibrium Process- When a process is carried out in such a
manner that the system remains infinitely close to an Equilibrium state at all times, is called a
Quasi-static or Quasi-Equilibrium Process.
It should be pointed out that, a quasi equilibrium process is an idealized process and is not a true representation
of actual process. But many actual processes closely approximate it and they can be modeled as quasi-
equilibrium with negligible error. Engineers are interested in quasi-equilibrium process for two reasons. First
they are easy to analyze and second work producing devices deliver maximum work when they operate on
quasi-equilibrium processes. Therefore quasi-equilibrium processes serve as standards to which actual processes
can be compared.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 13

Engineering Thermodynamics

Figure 1 –Quasi-static Process Figure 2 –Non-Quasi-static Process

Explanation- Some unbalanced potential must exist either within the system or between a system and
surrounding to promote changes of state during a thermodynamic process. Consider a system of gas contained
in a cylinder fitted with a piston upon which are placed very small pieces of weights. The upward force exerted
by the gas just balances the weights of the piston. The system is initially in equilibrium state identified by
pressure p1, volume v1 and temperature T1. When these weights are removed slowly, one at a time, the
unbalance potential is infinitesimally small. The piston will slowly move upwards and at any particular instant
of piston travel, the system would be almost close to the state of equilibrium. The departure of the state of
system from thermodynamic equilibrium state will be infinitely small. Every state passed by the system will be
in equilibrium state. The locus of series of such equilibrium state is called quasi-static or quasi-equilibrium
process and can be represented graphically as a continuous line on a state diagram. A qausi-static process is thus
a succession of equilibrium states.
In contrast, if all the weights are removed suddenly, the unbalanced potential would be finite. The piston
will jump up, strike the stoppers and come to equilibrium state 2 pressure p2, volume v2 and temperature T2
after many oscillations. However the intermediate states through which the gas (system) passes are

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 14

Engineering Thermodynamics

indeterminate and cannot be represented on the state diagram. The dotted line 1-2 indicates the general direction
of change between initial and final state. Such a process is non- equilibrium or a non-quasi-static process. Most
of the real processes are non-quasi-static even though may be in equilibrium at terminal (initial and final) states.

i) Reversible Process: - A quasi-static process that can be reversed without leaving any trace on the
surroundings i.e. both the system and surrounding are returned to their initial states at the end of the
reverse process. OR
A thermodynamic process is reversible if the system passes through a continuous series of
equilibrium states. An equilibrium state of the system can be located on any diagram drawn for properties
(such as pressure volume diagram) at any instant during the process. The reversible process is then shown
by a line drawn through the points representing the equilibrium states. Fig. Shows a reversible process on P-
V plot whose path is 1-2. If the process is reversed, path 2-1 will be followed and that will restore the
system as well as surrounding to their respective initial states.
The following condition must be satisfied for the process to be reversible-
1) There should be no friction
2) The heat exchange to or from the system should be only through infinitely small temperature
3) The process should be quasi-static; it should proceed at infinitely slow speed. For this purpose
the pressure difference between the system and the surrounding must be infinitely small.

Figure- Reversible and Quasi-static Process

Example- Compression and expansion of a spring or balloon, motion without friction, electric
circuit with zero resistance, restricted and controlled expansion or compression etc.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 15

Engineering Thermodynamics

ii) Irreversible process:- A process in which system and surrounding are not returned to their initial
states at the end of the process is called Irreversible Process. OR
A process is Irreversible if the system passes through a sequence of non-equilibrium states. During such
as a process the properties of the system do not have a unique value and accordingly cannot be located on
any property diagram. When an irreversible process is made to proceed in the backward direction, the
original state of the system is not restored. An irreversible process cannot be represented by a full line on
diagram of properties since the properties are definite at initial and final states only.

An irreversible process is identified by the following characteristics-

1) It can be carried out in one direction only
2) It occurs at finite rate
3) It cannot be reversed without causing permanent changes in the surrounding.
4) The system is never in equilibrium states at any instant during an irreversible process.
Most of the engineering processes are Irreversible Processes.
Example: - Once a cup of hot coffee cools, it will not heat up by retrieving (get back) the heat it lost from the
surrounding. Spontaneous chemical reaction, free expansion and mixing of gases are some other examples of
Irreversible process.

Causes of Irreversibility:-
1) Heat transfer through a finite temperature difference: - A heat transfer process approaches
reversibility as the temperature difference between two bodies, approaches zero. We define a reversible
heat transfer process as one in which heat is transferred through an infinitesimal temperature difference.
So to transfer a finite amount of heat through an infinitesimal temperature difference would require an

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 16

Engineering Thermodynamics

infinite amount time, or infinite area. All actual heat transfer processes are through a finite temperature
difference and are therefore, irreversible, and greater the temperature difference, the greater is the
2) Friction: - When two bodies in contact are forced to move relative to each other, a friction force that
opposes the motion develops at the interface of these two bodies and some work is needed to overcome
this frictional force. The energy supplied as work is eventually converted into heat during the process
and is transferred to the bodies at contact as evidenced by the rise in temperature at the interface. When
the direction of motion is reversed, the bodies are restored to their original position, but the interface
does not cool and heat is not converted back to work.
3) Paddle wheel work transfer: - When fluid is stirred by means of a shaft and a paddle wheel, there is
work transfer to the fluid. This work transfer increases the molecular internal energy of the system.
Conversion of this molecular internal energy again back to work is impossible.
4) Lack of pressure Equilibrium: - When there exists a difference in pressure between the system and
surrounding or within the system itself, then both the system and its surrounding or the system alone will
undergo a change of state, which leads to irreversibility.

(1) Iso-thermal or Constant Temperature Process:-
A change in the state of the system at constant temperature is called Isothermal Process; here
changing variables are pressure and volume.
The process is represented as PV = constant.
Example: - An isothermal process can be performed in a piston-cylinder assembly which is surrounded
by a constant temperature T reservoir. When the ideal gas inside the cylinder is at temperature ‘T’ at any
instant of time, there exists thermal equilibrium between the system and surroundings; as such there is
no heat interaction across the system boundary in either direction. Subsequently when the piston moves
outwards the gas expands and its temperature falls by an amount dT. Heat then flows from the reservoir
to the gas until its original temperature is restored. Similar events followed and process is completed.
General example of isothermal process is Thermos Flask.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 17

Engineering Thermodynamics

(2) Iso-baric Process or constant Pressure Process

A change in the state of the system at constant pressure is called Iso-baric process. The process
is represented as P = Constant.
Example:- An Iso-baric process can be carried out in piston cylinder assembly with a piston loaded
with a constant dead weight. A perfect gas enclosed in the cylinder and on the underside of the piston is
considered as a system. When the gaseous system is supplied heat, there occurs an increase in
temperature and volume of the gas, and accordingly piston is pushed upwards. Ignoring the friction
between the cylinder and piston, piston moves upwards slowly and system passes through a series of
equilibrium positions maintaining constant intensity of pressure.
Example- Constant pressure process takes place in Boilers, furnaces, heat exchangers, condensers,
radiators, refrigerators, evaporators etc.

Figure: - Iso-Baric Process or Constant Pressure Process

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 18

Engineering Thermodynamics

(3) Iso-choric process or Constant Volume Process :-

A change in the state of the system at constant volume is called Iso-choric process. An Iso-
choric process results when the gas system is heated or cooled in an enclosed space. The process is
represented as V = Constant.
During an isochoric process, both the pressure and temperature change. The pressure and temperature
increases when heat is supplied to the system and decrease when heat is rejected by the system.

Figure:- Iso-Choric Process or Constant Volume Process

Example -Pressure Cooker, gas in a rigid container etc.

(4) Adiabatic Process:-
A process during which there is no heat transfer is called adiabatic process. An adiabatic
system is one which is thermally insulated from the surroundings. There exist walls or boundaries which
do not allow heat transfer to occur across them. Such boundaries are known as adiabatic. It can however
exchange work with its surroundings. An adiabatic process should not be confused with the isothermal
process. Even though there is no heat transfer during an adiabatic process the energy content and thus the
temperature of a system can still be changed by other means such as work. If it does not exchange work
also, it becomes an Isolated System.
Adiabatic process can be carried out by the expansion or compression of gas in a cylinder whose
walls are insulated. A reversible adiabatic process is called Isentropic Process. The process is represented
as pv   c . ϒ is called adiabatic index and is a property of the gas. The value of ϒ for air is 1.4.
Example- Adiabatic process takes place in steam Turbines, gas turbines and rotary compressors.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 19

Engineering Thermodynamics

Figure: - Representation of Reversible adiabatic Process on P-V diagram (compression)

(5) Polytropic Process:-
During actual expansion and compression processes of gases, pressure and volume are often
related by PVn = C, where n and C are constant. A process of this kind is called Polytropic
Process. n- is Polytropic index and ‘n’ may take value from -∞ to +∞.
Each of the isochoric, isobaric, isothermal and adiabatic processes are quasi-static in operation
under ideal working condition. For all these processes, the relation between pressure and volume can be
described by a single equation PVn = C, where n is a positive number. The equation PVn = C is called
Polytropic law, and the process in which state of the system changes according to this correlation is
called Polytropic Process.

Figure: - Representation of Polytropic Process on P-V diagram (compression)

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 20

Engineering Thermodynamics

Polytropic index PVn = C Name of process
n=o P=C Iso- Baric Process
n=1 PV = C Iso Thermal Process
n=ϒ pv  c Adiabatic Process
n=∞ V=C Iso- Choric Process

University Questions: - Differentiate between path function and point function… (2 Marks) OR
Explain the terms i) Point Function And ii) Path function……………. (4 Marks) OR What do you
mean by Path function and Point function?. What are exact and inexact differentials?.................. (4

When two properties locate a point on the graph (Co-ordinate axes) and for a given state, there is a
definite value for each property, then those properties are called as Point Function.
Examples: - Pressure, temperature, volume etc.

Thermodynamic properties are Point Functions, since for a given state, there is a definite value for each
property. The change in a thermodynamic property of a system, in a change of state, is independent of the path
the system follows during the change of state, and depends only on the initial and final states of the sysytem.
The differentials of the point functions are exact or perfect differentials, and the integration is simply,


 dV  V
2  V1

The change in Volume thus depends only on the end states of the system irrespective of the path the system


There are certain quantities which cannot be located on a graph by a point but are given by the area or
so, on that graph. In that case, the area on the graph, pertaining to the particular process, is a function of the path
of the process. Such quantities are called Path Functions.

Examples: - Heat and work etc.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 21

Engineering Thermodynamics

Figure:- Work- A Path Function

With reference to figure, it is possible to take a system from state 1 to state 2 along many quasi-static
paths, such as path A, or path B. Since area under each curve represents the work for each process, the amount
of work involved in each case is not a function of the end states of the process and it depends on the path the
system follows in going from state 1 to state 2. For this reason, work is called a path function and δW is an
inexact or imperfect differential.

Work done in a Quasi-Static process between two given states depends on the path followed and are
given as,

2 2

 W  W
2  W1 Rather  W  W
1 2 or W2 .

Difference between Point and Path Function: -

Point Function Path Function

1) At a particular point or state, it represents 1) These are given by the area under the
definite value of the property. curve.
2) Point function does not depend on the path 2) Path function depends on the path
followed by the system. followed by the system.
3) Point function represents exact or perfect 3) Path function represents inexact or
differentials. imperfect differentials.
4) Examples:- Pressure, temperature, volume etc. 4) Examples: - work and Heat.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 22

Engineering Thermodynamics


Temperature may be defines as
1) Degree of hotness and coldness of a body or an environment measured on a definite scale.
2) Driving force or potential causing the flow of energy as Heat.
3) Measure of the mean kinetic energy of the molecules of the system. A change in the temperature of the
system accounts for the change in molecular motion and hence the kinetic energy of the molecules.
4) Parameters which determines whether or not a system is in thermal equilibrium with another system.
Temperature is an Intensive property independent of the size and mass of the system.
NOTE :- (In describing heat transfer problems, students often make the mistake of interchangeably using the
terms heat and temperature. Actually, there is a distinct difference between the two. Heat is energy in transit.
The transfer of energy as heat occurs at the molecular level as a result of a temperature difference. Heat is
capable of being transmitted through solids and fluids by conduction, through fluids by convection, and through
empty space by radiation. The symbol for heat is Q).
The temperature of the body is measured with the help of an instrument called Thermometer. Following are
the two commonly used scales for measuring temperature of the body-
1) Celsius or Centigrade Scale- The scale was first used by Celsius in 1742. The freezing point of water
on this scale is marked as Zero and boiling point of water as 100. The space between these two points
has 100 equal divisions and each division represents one degree Celsius written as oC.
2) Fahrenheit scale- The scale was first used in 1965. In this scale the freezing point of water is marked as
32 and the boiling point of water as 212. The space between these two points has 180 equal divisions
and each division represents one degree Fahrenheit written as oF.
Note- The relation between Celsius scale and Fahrenheit scale is given by
C F  32

100 180


State Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics………………(2 marks) OR

How Zeroth law form the basis of temperature measurement?..........(2 marks) OR

Define Zeroth law of thermodynamics? Why it is so called?.....................(3 marks) OR

Define Equality of temperature and Zeroth law of thermodynamics……..(4 marks)

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 23

Engineering Thermodynamics

Two systems are equal in temperature if no change occurs in any property when they are
brought in contact for sufficiently long time.
Consider two systems, perfectly insulated from the surroundings and at different temperatures. When they are
brought into physical contact, the energy in the form of heat will flow from hot system to cold system and there
could occur changes in their physical properties such as length, electrical resistance. After sufficient long time
of contact, no further change occurs and thermal equilibrium is established. The two systems is then said to
have the same temperature.


When a body A is in thermal equilibrium with a body B, and also separately with a body C, then B
and C will be in thermal equilibrium with each other.

Zeroth law of thermodynamics is the basis of Temperature Measurement. In order to obtain the
quantitative measure of temperature, a reference body is used and certain physical characteristic of this body
which changes with temperature is selected. The changes in the selected characteristics may be taken as an
indication of change in temperature. The selected characteristic is called Thermometric property and the
reference body which is used in the determination of temperature is called Thermometer. A very common
thermometer consists of a small amount of mercury in an evacuated capillary tube. In this case the extension of
mercury in the capillary tube is used as the thermodynamic property.


Zeroth law was developed by R. H. Fowler in 1931, and the first and second laws already existed at that time.
However during the development of first and second law, the basics of the postulate (Law) stated by Fowler
were assumed to be true without stating the statement of Zeroth law statement in first and second laws.
Accordingly for the logical development of the subject of thermal science, it was thought appropriate to put the
law proposed by Fowler before first and second law and hence it is called as Zeroth law of thermodynamics.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 24

Engineering Thermodynamics


Energy is defined as a capacity to do work. Energy can be stored within the system and can be
transferred from one system to another. The energy possessed by the system is of two types-
1) Stored energy – is contained within the system boundaries. Examples of these types are (i) Potential
Energy (ii) Kinetic Energy (iii) Internal Energy etc.
2) Energy in Transition- is one which crosses the system boundaries. Examples of these types of energy
are Heat, Work etc.

1) Potential Energy – The energy that a system possesses as a result of its elevation in a gravitational field
is called Potential Energy and is expressed as
P.E = work done against gravity
P.E = weight x Height raised above earth surface
P.E = m.g.z (kJ)
Where ‘g’ is the gravitational acceleration and ‘z’ is the elevation of the center of gravity of a system
relative to some arbitrarily selected reference plane.
2) Kinetic Energy - The energy that a system possesses as a result of its motion relative to some reference
plane is called Kinetic Energy.
Consider a system of constant mass ‘m’ which moves through a distance dx in the direction of force
acting upon it.
Elementary work done = Force x elementary distance moved
m  dx
 mV  dV ..........( V)
Where ‘v’ is the velocity of the system in the direction of distance moved, then
Kinetic Energy gained by the body = Total work done

 m  V dV

mv 2
K .E  (kJ )
If the velocity changes from V1 to V2 then, 2

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 25

Engineering Thermodynamics

3) Internal Energy – The microscopic forms of energy related to molecular structure of the of the system
and the degree of molecular activity and which are independent of outside reference frame, sum of these
microscopic forms of energies (Such as Molecular Vibration, Molecular Transition, Molecular
rotational energy) is called Internal Energy and denoted by U.
Sum of K.E, P.E and Internal Energy is called Total Energy (E).

Note:- PRESSURE- It is defined as force acting per unit area. i.e. P = (F/A) (N/m2). (Pa = N/m2)
(1) Atmospheric Pressure - This is the pressure exerted by the envelope of the air surrounding the earth
surface. The standard atmospheric pressure is defined as the pressure measured by a column of mercury
760 mm of high.
Patm = ρHg g h
Where ρHg – Density of mercury = 13.6 x10 kg/m3 ,

g – Acceleration due to gravity = 9.8 m/s2 and

h- Height of the mercury column in manometer =760 mm of Hg.
Patm = ρHg g h = 13.6 x103 kg/m3 x 9.81 m/s2 x 0.760 m
= 101325 N/m2 = 1.01325 x 10 5 Pa = 1.01325 bar.
(2) Absolute pressure-(Pabs) – Pressure has been defined as the force per unit area due to interaction of
fluid particles amongst themselves (molecular momentum). A zero pressure intensity will occurs when
molecular momentum is zero. Such a situation occurs when there is a perfect vacuum. Pressure intensity
measured from this state of vacuum or zero pressure is called absolute pressure.
(3) Gauge Pressure (Pg) and Vacuum Pressure (Pvac)- Instruments and gauges used to measure fluid
pressure generally measures the difference between the unknown pressure p and the existing
atmospheric pressure Patm .
When the unknown pressure is more than atmospheric pressure, the pressure recorded by the
instrument is called Gauge Pressure.
When the unknown pressure reading is below atmospheric pressure it is known as Vacuum, rarefaction
or negative pressure.

Pabs = Patm + Pg
Pabs = Patm – Pvac

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 26

Engineering Thermodynamics

An ideal or perfect gas 1) has no molecular forces of attraction or repulsion,
2) Does not change its phase during thermodynamic processes, and
3) Obeys a set of common rules governing change of its properties.


A gas is defined as a state of substance whose evaporation from its liquid state is complete. If its
evaporation is partial the substance is called Vapor. A vapor thus contains some particles of liquid in
suspension. It may be noted that a vapor may be dry, when it is completely evaporated. If the vapor is further
heated the process is called superheating and vapor is called superheated vapor. Superheated vapor behave like
a perfect gas.

1) Boyle’s Law- The law was discovered by Robert Boyle in 1662 A.D and stated as-
When temperature remains constant, the volume of a perfect gas is inversely proportional to the absolute
Let p = absolute pressure of a gas,
V = volume of a gas at pressure p, and
T = absolute temperature of gas. Then

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 27

Engineering Thermodynamics

V  
 P T Cons tan t
or PV  Cons tan t
2) Charles’s Law-
This law is stated by Charles’s in 1887 A.D. It may be stated in two ways-
1) If the pressure remains constant the volume of a given mass of a gas varies directly as the absolute
temperature. Thus,
V  T  p Cons tan t
or  Cons tan t
2) If the volume remains constant, the absolute pressure of a given mass of a perfect gas varies directly
with absolute temperature.
P T vCons tan t
or  Cons tan t
Q- Prove the characteristics gas equation PV=mRT……………………….. (3 Marks)
Ans:- To derive the characteristics gas equation for perfect gas, let us consider a unit mass (1 Kg) of a perfect
gas to change its state in the following two successive processes.

For the process 1-2’,Since P = constant, applying Charle’s law (/T = constant)
v1 v2
 ....where v  specific volume (m3 / kg )
T1 T2
For process 2-2’, Temperature is constant

T2  T2
So replace T’2 with T2

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 28

Engineering Thermodynamics

v1 v2

T1 T2 ……..(1)

For the process 2-2’, Temperature T = constant, so applying Boyle’s law (P = constant)

P2v2  P2v2

 
Since P2  P2 , 1 2  P2 v2

v2 
P1 …….(2)

putting value of v2 from eq(2) in eq (1), we get

v1 P2v2

1 2

1 1 Pv
or  2 2
T1 T2
i.e  cons tan t
The magnitude of this constant depends upon the particular gas and is denoted by R, where R is called the
characteristic or specific gas constant. Then

We have Pv  RT
but v  (Volume / mass)  V / m
P  RT
for m kg , occupying V m3 ......
PV  mRT

Mole- A mole of a substance has mass numerically equal to the molecular weight of the substance. E.g. 1 kg
mole of a oxygen has a mass of 32 kg.
Let n-no of moles of the gas
m( kg ) m
n  kgmole
M (kg / kgmoles ) M

Where m- mass of the gas and M- Molecular weight of the gas.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 29

Engineering Thermodynamics

Put in equation (1) ……m = n. M

and .......MR  Ro  Universal Gas Cons tan t  8314 J / kg  mole K
PV  nRoT ....................(2)

PV  nRoT
P  RoT
V m3
vmole 
n kgmole
Pvmole  RoT .........(3)

University Que - Define characteristic gas constant. How does it differ from universal gas constant?
Write units for these constant……………. (3 marks)

Ans- Unit of characteristic gas constant—

we have PV  mRT .
( 2 ) ( m3 )
R m
( kg ) ( K )

N .m
kg .K
kg .K

So characteristic gas has thus unit of energy per unit mass per unit temperature difference,
Characteristic Gas Constant is defined as –The amount of work done (J) at constant pressure when unit
mass (kg) of gas expands reversibly due to temperature rise of one degree Kelvin (K).
we have MR  Ro  Universal Gas Cons tan t

Universal Gas Constant is defined as the product of gas constant and molecular mass of the gas.

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 30

Engineering Thermodynamics

The unit of universal gas constant-

MR  Ro  Universal Gas Cons tan t
But M  m
Ro  m .R
Ro  .J
kg  mole kgK
Ro  J
kg  moleK

S.No Characteristics gas constant (R) Universal gas constant (R0)

1 Characteristic Gas Constant is defined as Universal Gas Constant is defined as the
–The amount of work done (J) at product of gas constant and molecular mass of
constant pressure when unit mass (kg) of the gas.
gas expands reversibly due to
temperature rise of one degree Kelvin
2 The value of characteristics gas constant The value of characteristics gas constant (R)
(R) depends upon the type of gas used is independent of the type of gas used for
for analysis. analysis.
(For each gas there is specific value of
For all gases value of R0 is constant and is
‘R’ depends upon its molecular weight)
equal to R0= 8314 J/ kg.mole K
3 The unit of characteristic Gas Constant The unit of universal gas constant-
R= J/kgK R0 = J / kg.mole K

Notes By…Vipin B. Gawande, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, P.R.P.C.E, Amravati Page 31