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Entropy 2004, 6(1), 102-115; doi:10.3390/e6010102

A Modified Szilard's Engine: Measurement, Information, and Maxwell's Demon

Los Alamos Economic Development Corporation, 127 Eastgate Dr., Los Alamos, NM 87544, USA
Received: 1 July 2003 / Accepted: 23 December 2003 / Published: 23 March 2004
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quantum Limits to the Second Law of Thermodynamics)
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Abstract

Using an isolated measurement process, I've calculated the effect measurement has on entropy for the multi-cylinder Szilard engine. This calculation shows that the system of cylinders possesses an entropy associated with cylinder total energy states, and that it records information transferred at measurement. Contrary to other's results, I've found that the apparatus loses entropy due to measurement. The Second Law of Thermodynamics may be preserved if Maxwell's demon gains entropy moving the engine partition.
Keywords: Szilard's engine; Maxwell's demon; quantum measurement; information theory Szilard's engine; Maxwell's demon; quantum measurement; information theory
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Devereux, M. A Modified Szilard's Engine: Measurement, Information, and Maxwell's Demon. Entropy 2004, 6, 102-115.

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