Education Technology

First Law of Thermodynamics

Activity Overview

In this activity, students explore the first law of thermodynamics and apply it to various thermodynamics processes in order to calculate heat, work, and changes in internal energy of a very simple system: an ideal gas enclosed in a container fitted with a movable piston.

Key Steps

  • Image

    Students should open the TNS file, read the first two pages, and then move to page 1.3, which shows an animated piston cylinder and a graph of pressure (P) vs. volume (V). In this part of the activity, students will use TI-Nspire features to simulate isothermal expansion and compression of an ideal gas.