Laws of Thermodynamics

Laws of Thermodynamics - that forever increases in systems...

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Laws of Thermodynamics Universal laws of energy exchange, the  laws of thermodynamics , govern all interactions among  organisms (and all matter). Two are especially important in explaining how organisms manage their  energy needs.  First Law of Thermodynamics —the conservation of energy—simply states that while the  form of energy can be changed, energy itself can neither be created nor destroyed. Energy  exists in two forms:  potential energy  (stored energy  available  to do work) and  kinetic  energy  (the energy used to  do  work).  Second Law of Thermodynamics —the law of  entropy  (disorder)—in brief, states  that chemical reactions run downhill, i.e., the products of the reaction always have less  potential energy than the original reactants. Entropy measures the randomness or disorder 
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Unformatted text preview: that forever increases in systems to which no energy is added. In each energy exchangefrom the first photosynthetic reaction to the last in the food web where carnivores dine on one anotherenergy escapes, primarily as heat. Although the heat energy remains in the system (fulfilling the First Law of conservation), the energy is no longer available to do work, hence it is lost to further metabolism. Each of the exchanges is exergonic (ex = out; energy out). The heat of the system rises in proportion to the loss of potential energy. To maintain the organized systems like organisms, therefore, energy is added constantly in a series of endergonic (end = in; energy in) processes....
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This note was uploaded on 11/14/2011 for the course BIO 1421 taught by Professor Farr during the Fall '08 term at Texas State.

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