Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

A Heat Engine: Relating Work to the P-V Cycle


You have been studying your textbook carefully and are trying to understand how the work done by a heat engine can be related to changes in the pressure, P, and volume, V, of its working substance. In particular you would like to relate the work it takes to lift a mass to the area enclosed by a P-V diagram that describes what happens the engine's air — its working substance.


In this activity, you will

  • Explore how the work done by an engine that raises a mass during each of its cycles is related to the area enclosed by its P-V graph.

Software for Experiment

This experiment uses Logger Pro software for video analysis. The video for analysis is included with the lab book.

Experiment 24 from Physics with Video Analysis Lab Book

<em>Physics with Video Analysis</em> book cover

Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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