Why is dissipative work insistently ignored? the case of heat capacities

Joaquim Anacleto, J. M. Ferreira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Dissipative work is used to address some textbook definitions of heat capacity at constant volume C V and at constant pressure C P. It is shown that dissipative work should be accounted for when this topic is presented to the students, so that all C V (and C P ) definitions are equivalent, instead of imposing unnecessary restrictions on thermodynamic processes. Finally, one simple but illustrative example is given. This work is also relevant from a didactic and pedagogical standpoint, since it helps dispel some misunderstandings related to the concepts outlined herein.

Original languageEnglish
Article number055102
JournalEuropean Journal Of Physics
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jul 2018


  • dissipative work
  • heat
  • heat capacity


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