Unattainability of Carnot efficiency in thermal motors: Coarse graining and entropy production of Feynman-Smoluchowski ratchets

Yohei Nakayama, Kyogo Kawaguchi, Naoko Nakagawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We revisit and analyze the thermodynamic efficiency of the Feynman-Smoluchowski (FS) ratchet, a classical thought experiment describing an autonomous heat-work converter. Starting from the full kinetics of the FS ratchet and deriving the exact forms of the hidden dissipations resulting from coarse graining, we restate the historical controversy over its thermodynamic efficiency. The existence of hidden entropy productions implies that the standard framework of stochastic thermodynamics applied to the coarse-grained descriptions fails in capturing the dissipative feature of the system. In response to this problem, we explore an extended framework of stochastic thermodynamics to reconstruct the hidden entropy production from the coarse-grained dynamics. The approach serves as a key example of how we can systematically address the problem of thermodynamic efficiency in a multivariable fluctuating nonequilibrium system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number022102
JournalPhysical Review E
Volume98
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Aug 3
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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