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Quasistatic equilibrium

Quasistatic equilibrium is the quasi-balanced state of a thermodynamic system near to thermodynamic equilibrium in some sense or degree. A process is called quasi-static when it follows a succession of equilibrium states; the surroundings may be irreversibly altered during the process so that after a return path, the system ends up in a final state which differs from its initial state.

The quasistatic equilibrium model facilitates or justifies the use of Gibbsian thermodynamic applications, i.e. equations of state, to systems characterized by slow change if measured on the adjunct time scale. In short, the quasistatic equilibrium model approximates change as a series of equilibrium processes.

In a quasistatic process, or equilibrium process, a sufficiently slow transition of a thermodynamic system from one equilibrium state to another occurs such that at every moment in time the state of the system is close to an equilibrium state. During a quasistatic process, the system reaches equilibrium much faster, almost instantaneously, than its physical parameters vary. A quasistatic process is not necessarily a reversible one.

See also


  • Perrot, P. (1998). A to Z of Thermodynamics (dictionary). New York: Oxford University Press.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Quasistatic_equilibrium". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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