Concept

Heat engine

Summary
In thermodynamics and engineering, a heat engine is a system that converts heat to usable energy, particularly mechanical energy, which can then be used to do mechanical work. While originally conceived in the context of mechanical energy, the concept of the heat engine has been applied to various other kinds of energy, particularly electrical, since at least the late 19th century. The heat engine does this by bringing a working substance from a higher state temperature to a lower state temperature. A heat source generates thermal energy that brings the working substance to the higher temperature state. The working substance generates work in the working body of the engine while transferring heat to the colder sink until it reaches a lower temperature state. During this process some of the thermal energy is converted into work by exploiting the properties of the working substance. The working substance can be any system with a non-zero heat capacity, but it usually is a gas or liqu
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