The fundamental laws of thermodynamics we have studied in class provide a useful framework to evaluate problems well beyond those in the textbook. While we have focused on power plants and refrigeration cycles, these laws are also useful for in fields ranging from biology to electronics. In your final project for the class, you will practice applying the laws of thermodynamics to a problem you find interesting. As you will discover, applying thermodynamic concepts outside of the classroom is not as straightforward as a typical homework problem.
For your final project you will choose an interesting question that can be analyzed using thermodynamic principles. Some examples of problems are provided at the end of this assignment. You will then write a report that summarizes your question and findings. The report is written for a technical audience (e.g. your peers in this class). Your report should include the
• Abstract (including the question you chose to investigate and a summary of results)
• Theoretical Analysis (please number all equations; do not carry out calculations in this section)
• Experiments (only if you did carry out experiments)
• Results and Discussion (calculations and obvious reactions to results go in this section)
• Conclusions (should show reflection on impact of your solution in a global, economic,
environmental, and/ or societal context)
• References (please cite your sources of information)
Your report (including figures, equations, tables, and references) should be limited to 3 pages or less and use 1.5 line spacing, 10-12- point font, and standard margins.
Logistics and Schedule
You may choose to work on this project as a team of two or you may complete the assignment on your own. Important dates:
• Submit Research Question: Wednesday November 30
o Please upload to blackboard a paragraph that explains the question you have selected and
how you plan to approach your analysis.
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