The First Law of Thermodynamics


Arnold Sommerfeld, the German theoretical physicist said “Thermodynamics is a funny subject. The first time you go through it, you don't understand it at all. The second time you go through it, you think you understand it, except for one or two small points. The third time you go through it, you know you don't understand it, but by that time you are so used to it, it doesn't bother you anymore.” This humorous view makes us think that every law guides us to the distinctness of thermodynamic properties which in turn aids us to comprehend and foretell the functioning of a physical system.

Thermodynamics is actually a division of physics dealing with the energy and function of a system. Thermodynamics in reality deals only with the high level reaction of a system providing us with the facility of observing and measuring in experiments. The systems of propulsion and high speed flows are the area of thermodynamics which makes aerodynamics an interesting subject. The capacity of heat is a constant that states the amount of heat added when there is an increase in per unit temperature. The measure of the constant is not the same for different substances. Heat is constantly transmitted from a higher temperature object to an object of lower temperature.

The inner energy is merely a type of energy similar to the potential energy of a physical object at some altitude higher up the earth, or the kinetic energy of a physical object in movement. Just like the ability to convert potential energy to kinetic energy while maintaining the full energy of the structure, the inner energy of a thermodynamic arrangement can be transformed to either kinetic or potential energy. Similar to the storage capacity of potential energy, the internal energy can also be hidden away or stored in the system. On the other hand, heat and work cannot be hoarded or preserved separately since they reckon on the physical process. The 1st law of thermodynamics permits for several potential conditions of a system to subsist, but only some conditions can be seen existing in nature.

For example in the case of a gas, the heat transmit is linked to an alteration in temperature. The condition of a gas is determined by its temperature, pressure, and volume. In order to change the state of a gas it has to be heated or it can be achieved in a variety of ways. The quantity of work that a gas does depends on both the opening and absolute conditions and on the procedure applied to bring about the change. This shows that different processes will result in varied amount of heat transfer and work. The consequences of both heat flow and work are collective in the 1st Law of Thermodynamics. There are some thermodynamic procedures which do not result in heat transfer. Engineers have named such processes “adiabatic.”

Is Hell Exothermic or Endothermic?

Now we shall have a look at the humorous part of the 1st Law of Thermodynamics:

A thermodynamics professor had once given the question in a take home exam for his graduate students: "Is hell exothermic or endothermic? Support your answer with a proof." The majority of the students wrote validations of their notions applying Boyle's Law or some version. But there was one student who answered the question in a different way.

The student explained:

If it is true that souls exist, then it is a must that they contain mass. This leads to the calculation of the rate of movement of souls into and out of hell. But according to the laws of nature, once a soul enters hell then it will stay there permanently. We will have to calculate the volume change in hell. According to Boyle's Law if the temperature and pressure in hell has to remain constant, then the proportion of the accumulated souls and volume must remain constant. Therefore, if hell is amplifying at a more sluggish rate than the rate of soul entrance, then the temperature and force in hell will step-up until "all hell breaks loose." But if the case is reverse, that is the expansion rate of hell is faster than the soul entrance rate, then the heat and pressure will dip until "hell freezes over." However, the truth is that hell has not yet frozen thus proving it is exothermic.

If you are interested to read more of this real story and in all the actual terms (which are hilarious), then please visit Thermodynamics of Hell.

Is Heaven Hotter than Hell?

The hotness of heaven can be to a certain extent precisely calculated. In reality, from the moon, heaven gets the same amount of heat as the earth gets from the sun, and additionally forty nine times as much as the earth receives from the sun, or in total fifty times. Thus the radiation striking heaven will heat up the heaven till the point where the heat lost by radiation is equivalent to the heat obtained by radiation. Put differently, heaven drops off 50 times the quantity of heat as the earth by radiation.

According to the fourth power law for radiation derived by Stefan-Boltzmann (H/E) 4 = 50; where E is the unconditional temperature of the earth which is 300°K, and H is the fixed temperature of heaven which is 798°.

Since the precise hotness of hell cannot be calculated it is assumed to be less than 444.6°C, at which temperature sulfur converts into a gaseous form from liquid form. Thus we can conclude that heaven is hotter than hell because of the temperatures.

1st Law of Thermodynamics

It is impossible to obtain something from nothing,


The matter of using thermodynamics to the hypothesis of hell, in efforts to corroborate or controvert, in a modern human thermodynamic logic is a modern view. Thermodynamics presumes that humans are particles, complete, unadulterated, and trouble-free, synchronized by the laws of chemical thermodynamics similar to all other molecules in an established chemical system. This understanding straight away gives rise to a lot of issues which actually require a near total revolution to define and comprehend of constituting a human and living. Any new person in this subject will surely inquire as to whether a human molecule has a soul.

Therefore modern theory will have to find answers to a lot of questions. For instance it has to be found out as to what takes place when the basic molecules making up a human being move about in the cosmos and later on stop moving meaning dead. Does an individual’s entire activities and progress be it good or bad, affect the motion of the universe. If so, how can this be clarified in terms of the 1st law of thermodynamics?


Tom Benson – First Law of Thermodynamics

John C. Holden – Heaven is Hotter than Hell

Sadi-Carnot – Thermodynamics of Hell

Sommerfeld, Arnold. (1956). Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics: Lectures on Theoretical Physics (pg. 19). Vol. V., trans. by Joseph Kestin, Academic Press.