10 (- macroscopic & microscopic worlds in Boltzmann constants)

Two excerpts from Jean Tate’s article in Universe Today about Boltzmann constants:

“There are actually two Boltzmann constants, the Boltzmann constant and the Stefan-Boltzmann constant; both play key roles in astrophysics … the first bridges the macroscopic and microscopic worlds, and provides the basis for the zero-th law of thermodynamics; the second is in the equation for blackbody radiation.”

“Why does the Boltzmann constant pop up so often? Because the large-scale behavior of systems follows from what’s happening to the individual components of those systems, and the study of how to get from the small to the big (in classical physics) is statistical mechanics … which Boltzmann did most of the original heavy lifting in (along with Maxwell, Planck, and others); indeed, it was Planck who gave k its name, after Boltzmann’s death (and Planck who had Boltzmann’s entropy equation – with k – engraved on his tombstone).”

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