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Perpetual Motion

Started by DD1975, December 16, 2012, 23:30:26 PM

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You know what gets me about the people on the telly who try to describe the 2nd law? They always use the example of "bridges rust", when that's patently untrue, for several reasons:

1.) the law postulates the advance of entropy in a closed system, and a bridge over a river (or even sitting in the middle of the desert, or even in space, for that matter) cannot be in a "closed system", because, by definition, a closed system has no outside forces acting upon it,

2.) even if said bridge was floating in space, where it can't be acted upon by the atmosphere, causing it to "rust" over time (what if it's an aluminum bridge? can't rust!), there are still outside forces acting upon iit. Plus, it's not going to corrode while in space, will it? :P

"bridges rust", my aunt Fannie!
Safe, Reliable Insanity, Since 1961!


Aluminium (aluminum) corrodes in salt air. Technically only iron rusts.

The universe is a closed system. Entropy always increases. The only blip is systems far from equilibrium, most notibly; life.
Life can maintain order only by the constant flow of energy (food). Entropy always wins in the end.
"I cannot remember the books I've read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me."

Ralph Waldo Emerson


Oh, I'm not refuting the second law at all, Snowy. I'm just pointing out that they're using a flawed example, based on faulty nomenclature. And of course the Universe is a closed system, since there's nothing "outside" to influence things. Unless, of course, you take string theory into account along with multiple universes co-existing side by side, where the membranes between the two can be potentially disturbed, allowing things to "leak" from one to another and back. But that's highly theoretical stuff, and not widely accepted. :)
Safe, Reliable Insanity, Since 1961!


Space corrosion is generally called ablation. It is degradation by high energy particles from the solar wind and cosmic rays.

Most unity gain devices get their extra energy from somewhere else not specified in the device.

There is no such thing as a free lunch but the universe gets pretty close. (S.Hawking)
"I cannot remember the books I've read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me."

Ralph Waldo Emerson


Quote from: Snowcrash on December 17, 2012, 22:28:07 PM
And as for perpetual motion. 2lot, it's the law. (2nd law of thrmodynamics, the reason perpetual motion can't work)

Laws are there to be bent, broken or re-written  :thumbsup:
Smoke me a Kipper I'll be back for breakfast - Ace Rimmer