Evolution of Non-Equilibrium Stable Thermodynamic Processes

  • P. Glansdorff
Part of the International Centre for Mechanical Sciences book series (CISM, volume 261)


The laws of thermodynamics are concerned with the macroscopic properties of systems involving a large number of interacting particles, when considered at the microscopic scale. Any evolution of the mean behaviour of such collective processes is characterized by two very important effects: the existence of fluctuations and the appearance of irreversibility. Indeed, the latter never occurs in the dynamic laws governing the trajectories of only a very small number of constitutive particles, whereas it plays a prominent part as soon as the system exhibits a higher degree of complexity. On the other hand, the general stability problem of a non-equilibrium macroscopic state is strongly dependent on the existence of fluctuations. Moreover, this influence is particularly important around states located far from equilibrium.


Entropy Production Irreversible Process Dissipative Structure Local Entropy Evolution Criterion 
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General References

  1. [1]
    I. PRIGOGINE, Introduction to Thermodynamics of Irreversible processes (1961)Google Scholar
  2. [2]
    S.R. DE GROOT and P. MAZUR, Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics, North-Holland, Amsterdam (1962)Google Scholar
  3. [3]
    P. GLANSDORFF and I. PRIGOGINE, Thermodynamics of Structure, Stability and Fluctuations, J. Wiley, London (1971).Google Scholar
  4. [4]
    G. NICOLIS and I. PRIGOGINE, Self-Organization in Non Equilibrium Systems, J. Wiley-Interscience, New York, London (1977).Google Scholar
  5. [5]
    H. HAKEN, Synergetics, Springer, Berlin (1977).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. Glansdorff
    • 1
  1. 1.Université libreBruxellesBelgium

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