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Thermodynamics: Boundary Work of Closed Systems

Recall a closed system is a system that has a solid boundary layer so that mass cannot enter or leave the system, but energy can transfer across the boundary layer. There can be two different types of closed systems, a closed system that has the boundary layer fixed on all sides, and a closed system that has a moving boundary; refer to the figure below.

Closed Boundary system

For this section I'm going to discuss how to calculate the work required to move the moving boundary in the figure above.

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