Can I make Maxwell's demon?

  • 1 Replies
  • 1688 Views

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

*

Offline Geezer

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • 8328
  • "Vive la rÚsistance!"
    • View Profile
Can I make Maxwell's demon?
« on: 17/02/2011 21:23:52 »
Is it possible to build a Maxwell's demon to supercool atoms without violating the second law of thermodynamics?
There ain'ta no sanity clause, and there ain'ta no centrifugal force Šther.

*

Offline JP

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • 3366
    • View Profile
Can I make Maxwell's demon?
« Reply #1 on: 17/02/2011 21:38:14 »
Yes, in theory.  The entropy of the atoms decreases, but the demon has to itself run on energy.  Because of this, the demon causes entropy elsewhere to increase.  The demon + atom system together obeys the second law of thermodynamics.  Coming up with a practical way to sort atoms by their energy is going to present additional practical difficulties.