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# PHYSICS 7B Midterm 1 Review

Newton Cheng

## 1) Suppose you have a rectangular prism with expansion coefficients αl , αw , αh , corre-

sponding to expansion of its length, width, and height, respectively. How much do we
need to increase the temperature to increase the volume by 5%?

2) Suppose you have a cylinder of radius R1 which sits fixed at the center of a cylindrical
shell of radius R2 . They are both of length `. The inner cylinder has a radial coefficient
of expansion α1 , while the other shell has a radial coefficient α2 . Both cylinders have
a length-wise expansion coefficient αL . The ends are capped, and the space between
the cylinders is filled with an ideal gas at temperature T and pressure P .

## (a) How many molecules of the gas are there?

(b) Suppose the entire system is heated to a new temperature Tf . Determine the new
pressure of the gas.

3) A cylindrical container 1.2 m long is separated into two compartments by a thin piston,
originally clamped in a position 30 cm from the right end. The left compartment is
filled with helium gas at a pressure of 5 atm; the right compartment is filled with
argon gas at 3 atm of pressure. These gases may be considered ideal. The cylinder is
submerged in one gallon of water contained in an insulated container, and the entire
system is initially at the uniform temperature of 25 ◦ C. When the piston is unclamped,
it slides to a new position and settles into equilibrium.

## (a) What is the change in temperature of the water?

(b) How far from the left end of the cylinder will the piston come to rest?

4) The heat capacity at constant volume of a monatomic ideal gas is known to be CV = 600
J/K.

(a) If the gas is initially at temperature T0 , how much heat is required to raise the
temperature of the gas by 50 K at constant volume? What is the change in
internal energy of the gas?

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(b) For an ideal gas, the heat capacity at constant pressure is CP = CV + N k. Give
a qualitative explanation for why CP > CV .
(c) If the gas is initially at temperature T0 , how much heat is required to raise the
temperature of the gas by 50 K at constant pressure? What is the change in
internal energy of the gas?

Figure 1

5) (Note: this problem is probably longer than any individual problem on an exam; how-
ever, it covers almost every aspect of heat engines you would be expected to know).
Figure 1 represents a heat engine where the working substance is a monatomic ideal
gas. The gas consist of N = 6 · 1024 molecules. The process A → B is a straight
line, C → D is adiabatic, while D → E is isothermal. You may leave all answers in
symbolic form, but they should be entirely in terms of pressures and volumes.

(a) Before performing any calculations, denote the direction of heat flow for each leg
in the cycle.
(b) What is the volume of the gas at point D?
(c) What is the change in internal energy of the gas as it follows the path C → D →
E?
(d) Compute the work done in one cycle.

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(e) For each leg of the process, compute the heat exchanged by the gas.
(f) What is the change in entropy resulting from the path D → E?
(g) What is the change in the entropy of the gas resulting from the path D → E →
A → B → C?
(h) What would be the efficiency eC of a Carnot engine operating at the highest and
lowest temperatures in this cycle? How is it related to the efficiency e of an engine
operating in the given cycle?

6) An ice cube of mass mice at temperature Tice < 0◦ C is placed into a container which
is filled with msteam of steam at temperature 100◦ C. Assume the container is totally
insulated and rigid. The system equilibrates at a final temperature Tf where all the
ice and steam have turned to water.

## (a) What was the mass of the ice?

(b) What was the total entropy change due to the process? You may leave your
answer in terms of mice .
(c) What should we expect for the sign of ∆S?

Figure 2

7) Suppose there are two slabs with cross-sectional area A and widths L1 and L2 . They
have thermal conductivities k1 and k2 , respectively. The left-hand side of slab one is

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at T2 , and right-hand side of slab two is at T1 . Suppose the right-hand part of slab
one is in contact with the left-hand side of slab two (see Figure 2). Find the amount
∆Q
of heat per unit time ∆t
that passes through both of the slabs in series.

8) You are given a substance whose thermal conductivity k is constant, and is between
concentric spheres of radii r1 < r2 .
∆Q
(a) The radial heat flow ∆t
is constant. Why?
(b) Show that the radial heat flow is given by

∆Q 1
= 4πk(T1 − T2 ) 1 1 (0.1)
∆t r1
− r2

## (c) What is the temperature T (r) as a function of radius?

9) A spherical solid object with mass m, radius r, specific heat c, and emissivity e, floats
in the vacuum of intergalactic space. At t = 0, the sphere is at temperature T1 .

(a) How long does it take for the sphere to cool to the cosmic microwave background
(CMB) temperature T0 , assuming T1 > T0 ? Ignore the radiation energy that the
sphere will absorb from the CMB.
(b) If the temperature of the sphere at time t is T , what is the net heat loss of the
sphere at that time?
(c) How would your answers (qualitatively) change if we did take into account the
absorption of the background radiation?

## 10) The average surface temperature of Mars is −63 ◦ C.

(a) Given that the escape speed of Mars is approximately 5.0 km/s, can an average
hydrogen molecule escape from Mars? What about an oxygen molecule? You may
assume that the electron mass is negligible and the proton mass is mp = 1.7·10−27
kg.
(b) We know that Mars has almost no atmosphere – this is in part because there are
always some molecules with enough energy to escape. Write down an expression
for the percentage of hydrogen molecules that are energetic enough to escape.

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11) Suppose that the speed distribution of a set of N particles is described by the proba-
bility density function:

Av(v 2 − v 2 ) 0 < v < v0
0
f (v) = (0.2)
0 else

## (a) Determine the value of A.

(b) Determine the average momentum and kinetic energy of particles in the distribu-
tion.