Cookies?
Library Header Image
LSE Research Online LSE Library Services

Rethinking boltzmannian equilibrium

Werndl, Charlotte and Frigg, Roman (2015) Rethinking boltzmannian equilibrium. Philosophy of Science, 82 (5). pp. 1224-1235. ISSN 0031-8248

[img]
Preview
PDF - Accepted Version
Download (292kB) | Preview

Identification Number: 10.1086/683649

Abstract

Boltzmannian statistical mechanics partitions the phase space of a sys- tem into macro-regions, and the largest of these is identified with equilibrium. What justifies this identification? Common answers focus on Boltzmann’s combinatorial argument, the Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution, and maxi- mum entropy considerations. We argue that they fail and present a new answer. We characterise equilibrium as the macrostate in which a system spends most of its time and prove a new theorem establishing that equilib- rium thus defined corresponds to the largest macro-region. Our derivation is completely general in that it does not rely on assumptions about a system’s dynamics or internal interactions.

Item Type: Article
Official URL: http://journal.philsci.org/
Additional Information: © 2014 Philosophy of Science Association
Divisions: Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
CPNSS
Centre for Analysis of Time Series
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Sets: Departments > Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
Research centres and groups > Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science (CPNSS)
Research centres and groups > Centre for the Analysis of Time Series (CATS)
Date Deposited: 25 Nov 2014 09:04
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2019 01:58
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/60250

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics