Location

Tacoma

Event Website

Statistcal Mechanics and the Past Hypothesis

Start Date

1-2-2019 4:00 PM

End Date

1-2-2019 4:50 PM

Description

Statistical mechanics is a time invariant explanation of thermodynamic phenomena at a microphysical level. However, given that the laws of thermodynamics are not time-reversal symmetric, it is unclear whether to introduce the asymmetry through boundary conditions (through the past hypothesis) or through the dynamic laws themselves. In this paper, I defend the need of a boundary condition for statistical mechanics against two main objections: that there is no independent knowledge of the past hypothesis, and that the dynamic laws in statistical mechanics should be time-reversal asymmetric. I first introduce core notions of statistical mechanics, explain the past hypothesis and its motivation. Then, I bring up the two main objections against the past hypothesis and my subsequent defense against them.

Type

event

Included in

Philosophy Commons

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Feb 1st, 4:00 PM Feb 1st, 4:50 PM

Statistcal Mechanics and the Past Hypothesis

Tacoma

Statistical mechanics is a time invariant explanation of thermodynamic phenomena at a microphysical level. However, given that the laws of thermodynamics are not time-reversal symmetric, it is unclear whether to introduce the asymmetry through boundary conditions (through the past hypothesis) or through the dynamic laws themselves. In this paper, I defend the need of a boundary condition for statistical mechanics against two main objections: that there is no independent knowledge of the past hypothesis, and that the dynamic laws in statistical mechanics should be time-reversal asymmetric. I first introduce core notions of statistical mechanics, explain the past hypothesis and its motivation. Then, I bring up the two main objections against the past hypothesis and my subsequent defense against them.

https://soundideas.pugetsound.edu/psupc/psupc2019/friday/10