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Journal Articles Physical Review E : Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics Year : 2008

Mechanical Equivalent of Quantum Heat Engines

Abstract

Quantum heat engines employ as working agents multilevel systems instead of classical gases. We show that under some conditions quantum heat engines are equivalent to a series of reservoirs at different altitudes containing balls of various weights. A cycle consists of picking up at random a ball from one reservoir and carrying it to the next, thereby performing or absorbing some work. In particular, quantum heat engines, employing two-level atoms as working agents, are modeled by reservoirs containing balls of weight 0 or 1. The mechanical model helps us prove that the maximum efficiency of quantum heat engines is the Carnot effi- ciency. Heat pumps and negative temperatures are considered.
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lirmm-00363624 , version 1 (11-06-2021)

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Jacques Arnaud, Laurent Chusseau, Fabrice Philippe. Mechanical Equivalent of Quantum Heat Engines. Physical Review E : Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics, 2008, 77, pp.061102. ⟨10.1103/PhysRevE.77.061102⟩. ⟨lirmm-00363624⟩
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