Animated Engines

This site enables students to view simulations of many different types of thermodynamic engines, and provides a real-world connection to thermodynamic principles learned in the classroom. The net flow of heat energy from hot to cold and the concomitant conversion of a portion of that heat flow into mechanical work is the basis of our industrialized society. This enrichment site will allow the student to see the practical applications of thermodynamics. The teacher might ask for an analysis of an engineu2019s performance. During which part of an engine cycle does heat flow into the engine, and from where? During which part of the cycle does waste heat flow out, and to where? Finally, during which part of the cycle is mechanical work generated, and during which part of the cycle is mechanical work performed on the engine? For the engine to be useful, what must be true of the amount of work generated by the engine when compared to the amount of work done on the engine at various points in its cycle? It is recommended that the four-stroke internal combustion engine be the starting point for student investigation.

Standards & Objectives

Academic standards
CLE 3001.4.5
Use a standard format to arrange text, to cite sources correctly, and to document quotations, paraphrases, and other information.
CLE 3231.2.1
Develop an understanding of temperature, heat, and internal energy.
CLE 3231.2.3
Investigate exchanges in internal energy.
Alignment of this item to academic standards is based on recommendations from content creators, resource curators, and visitors to this website. It is the responsibility of each educator to verify that the materials are appropriate for your content area, aligned to current academic standards, and will be beneficial to your specific students.

Lesson Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: