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Isochoric process


Additional recommended knowledge

An isochoric process, also called an isometric process or an isovolumetric process, is a process during which volume remains constant. The name is derived from the Greek "iso" meaning "equal", and "choro" meaning "place".

If an ideal gas is used in an isochoric process, and the quantity of gas stays constant, then the increase in energy is proportional to an increase in temperature and pressure. Take for example a gas heated in a rigid container: the pressure and temperature of the gas will increase, but the volume will remain the same.

A real life example of an isochoric process is burning of a petrol-air mixture in an internal combustion engine, of any petrol/gasoline car.


If the volume stays constant (ΔV = 0), this implies that the process does no pressure-volume work, since such work is defined by


where P is pressure (no minus sign; this is work done by the system).

By applying the first law of thermodynamics, we can deduce that ΔU the change in the system's internal energy, is

ΔU = Q

for an isochoric process: all the heat being transferred to the system is added to the system's internal energy, U. If the quantity of gas stays constant, then this increase in energy is proportional to an increase in temperature,


where CV is molar specific heat for constant volume.

On a pressure volume diagram, an isochoric process appears as a straight vertical line. Its thermodynamic conjugate, an isobaric process would appear as a straight horizontal line.

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Isochoric_process". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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