chapter  36
11 Pages

Relaxation times

This chapter discusses issues related to the non-equilibrium state of the system. Chapter 1 presents the main provisions of the thermodynamics of non-equilibrium processes, which are equally related to different aggregate states and phases. The attraction of concepts about relaxat ion t imes in the non-equi l ibr ium thermodynamics turned out to be necessary for understanding the connection between the Kelvin equation and the equilibrium state of small drops of a liquid in a vapour (Section 7). Moreover, the fundamentals of non-equilibrium thermodynamics should be analyzed to understand the fundamentals of thermodynamics associated with the very concept of equilibrium and an implicit postulate regarding time constraints in the notion of Gibbs ‘passive forces’.