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For reversible work, the pressure gradually decreases as the volume of the system expands. At the start, the pressure outside the system matches the pressure inside of the system, so through infinitesimal changes in pressure, the volume of the gas will expand, and keep an equilibrium state with its surroundings. In irreversible work, the pressure is constant throughout as the system changes volume, and the system is not kept in an equilibrium state throughout its change.
A reversible process is a system at equilibrium (where the internal pressure and external pressures are equal). An irreversible process is a system not at equilibrium (the pressure is constant as the volume changes).
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