Type of system for mercury in thermometer

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Andrew Nguyen 2I
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Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby Andrew Nguyen 2I » Fri Jan 12, 2018 2:42 am

Can someone explain why mercury in a thermometer is an open system (obviously it can transfer mass+energy), but how?

Sarah_Stay_1D
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Re: Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby Sarah_Stay_1D » Fri Jan 12, 2018 9:04 am

Andrew Nguyen 2I wrote:Can someone explain why mercury in a thermometer is an open system (obviously it can transfer mass+energy), but how?


I just looked at the solutions manual and it states the mercury in a thermometer is a closed system. The mercury has a fixed amount of matter, but it can still exchange energy with its surroundings so it's a closed system.

Katherine 1F
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Re: Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby Katherine 1F » Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:24 am

Mercury in a thermometer is actually a closed system because only heat is exchanged between mercury and its surroundings.

Jessica Lutz 2E
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Re: Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby Jessica Lutz 2E » Fri Jan 12, 2018 10:50 am

Yes, it is a closed system because heat is absorbed or released in a thermometer causing the mercury to rise and fall, but the amount of mercury in the thermometer will never change. If it were an open system then there would also have to be a way for the mass of mercury to enter the surroundings.

AtreyiMitra2L
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Re: Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby AtreyiMitra2L » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:06 am

It would be a closed system. In a closed system, there is a transfer of energy but not of matter. Because it's in a tube, the mercury can't escape. But it can respond by changes in volume based on the transfer of energy through heat. Therefore, its a closed system.

Rachel Lu_dis1H
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Re: Type of system for mercury in thermometer

Postby Rachel Lu_dis1H » Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:47 pm

It would be a closed system because the mass (mercury) is fixed but it can still exchange energy with its surroundings


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