Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Nick in the News (or, Nick Touts Self)

I just wanted to vainly point out that if you google my name (in quotes) along with the word "thermoacoustic", that there are several news articles that have my name in them. (it helps to click on the "show similar results" button) Hurray for me!



6 comments:

morgan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
morgan said...

Wow Nick, it sounds like that might be some pretty important stuff. It surprised me how many different applications the technology will have.

I have a question, based on my limited knowledge of thermodynamics...it seems like your taking a rather disordered form of energy (heat) into a much more ordered form (electricity). It seems like that would be a significant decrease in entropy. Do you have to put much energy into the system to get that decrease?

Nick said...

To run the engines as a refrigerators, you have to put work into the system in order to pump heat up from the cold side to the hot side. When they are run as prime movers, they are turning heat into work, and dumping the excess heat into a cold sink. As with any thermodynamic engine, the highest efficiency you can get out of a device like that is Carnot's, or 1-T(cold)/T(hot), and our devices aren't quite as good as that, maybe 30% of carnot (which is still quite good considering the heat was going to be wasted anyway)

Nick said...

oops, I didn't answer your question. No, there is a net increase in entropy, since the hot side will decrease in entropy by dQ/T(hot), while the cold side will increase in entropy a larger amount dQ/T(cold), so overall, dS(cold)-dS(hot) > 0.

Nick said...

Now I have a picture in the deseret news. The next step for me is to get arrested for driving on a suspended license, woo the sheriff into letting me serve my jail term at home, and get re-hauled off to jail when an enraged public discovers the preferential treatment. THEN I'll be somebody.

randy said...

Look for the only guy not wearing a tie... that's Nick!!