If heat is a measure of the mean kinetic energy of the particles of a substance, then how does compressing it increase its temperature, since compression squishes the particles of a substance closer together, theoretically limiting movement?

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If heat is a measure of the mean kinetic energy of the particles of a substance, then how does compressing it increase its temperature, since compression squishes the particles of a substance closer together, theoretically limiting movement?

In: Physics

6 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

You’re thinking temperature, not heat. These are related but different.

The reason compression increases temperature is because the energy of the compressed gas is now more concentrated into a smaller volume, and thus the mean kinetic energy of the *volume* of the substance is higher because it occupies less volume with the same stuff.

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