Heat Transport: What I Wrote So Far.

Don't worry, The Subversive Elkement will publish the usual silly summer posting soon! Now am just tying up loose ends. In the next months I will keep writing about heat transport: Detailed simulations versus maverick's rules of thumb, numerical solutions versus insights from the few things you can solve analytically, and applications to our heat … Continue reading Heat Transport: What I Wrote So Far.

Spheres in a Space with Trillions of Dimensions

I don't venture into speculative science writing - this is just about classical statistical mechanics; actually about a special mathematical aspect. It was one of the things I found particularly intriguing in my first encounters with statistical mechanics and thermodynamics a long time ago - a curious feature of volumes. I was mulling upon how … Continue reading Spheres in a Space with Trillions of Dimensions

Ploughing Through Theoretical Physics Textbooks Is Therapeutic

And finally science confirms it, in a sense. Again and again, I've harping on this pet theory of mine: At the peak of my immersion in the so-called corporate world, as a super-busy bonus miles-collecting consultant, I turned to the only solace: Getting up (even) earlier, and starting to re-read all my old mathematics and … Continue reading Ploughing Through Theoretical Physics Textbooks Is Therapeutic

Simulating Peak Ice

This year ice in the tank was finally melted between March 5 to March 10 - as 'visual inspection' showed. Level sensor Mr. Bubble was confused during the melting phase; thus it was an interesting exercise to compare simulations to measurements. Simulations use the measured ambient temperature and solar radiation as an input, data points … Continue reading Simulating Peak Ice

Learning General Relativity

Math blogger Joseph Nebus does another A - Z series of posts, explaining technical terms in mathematics. He asked readers for their favorite pick of things to be covered in this series, and I came up with General Covariance. Which he laid out in this post - in his signature style, using neither equations nor … Continue reading Learning General Relativity

Rowboats, Laser Pulses, and Heat Energy (Boring Title: Dimensional Analysis)

Dimensional analysis means to understand the essentials of a phenomenon in physics and to calculate characteristic numbers - without solving the underlying, often complex, differential equation. The theory of fluid dynamics is full of interesting dimensionless numbers -  Reynolds Number is perhaps most famous. In the previous post on temperature waves I solved the Heat … Continue reading Rowboats, Laser Pulses, and Heat Energy (Boring Title: Dimensional Analysis)

Temperature Waves and Geothermal Energy

Nearly all of renewable energy exploited today is, in a sense, solar energy. Photovoltaic cells convert solar radiation into electricity, solar thermal collectors heat hot water. Plants need solar power for photosynthesis, for 'creating biomass'. The motion of water and air is influenced by the forces caused by the earth's rotation, but by temperature gradients … Continue reading Temperature Waves and Geothermal Energy

How to Evaluate a Heat Pump’s Performance?

The straight-forward way is to read off two energy values at the end of a period - day, month, or season: The electrical energy used by the heat pump and the heating energy delivered. The Seasonal Performance Factor (SPF) is the ratio of these - the factor the input electrical energy is 'multiplied with' to … Continue reading How to Evaluate a Heat Pump’s Performance?

Gödel, Escher, Bach, and Strange Loops: Nostalgia and Random Thoughts

I am curious - who read the book, too? Did you like it? I read it nearly 30 years ago and I would also tag it one of the most influential books I read as a teenager. [This might grow into a meandering and lengthy post with different (meta-)levels - given the subject of the post I … Continue reading Gödel, Escher, Bach, and Strange Loops: Nostalgia and Random Thoughts

In Praise of Textbooks with Tons of Formulas (or: The Joy of Firefighting)

I know. I am repeating myself. Maurice Barry has not only recommended Kahneman's Thinking, Fast and Slow to me, but he also runs an interesting series of posts on his eLearning blog. These got mixed and entangled in my mind, and I cannot help but returning to that pet topic of mine. First, some statistically … Continue reading In Praise of Textbooks with Tons of Formulas (or: The Joy of Firefighting)