Crítica, Revista Hispanoamericana de Filosofía, Volume 37, number 111, diciembre 2005
Los enfoques de Boltzmann y Gibbs frente al problema de la irreversibilidad
[Boltzmann and Gibbs Approaches in the Problem of Irreversibility]
Olimpia Lombardi
Instituto de Estudios sobre la Ciencia y la Tecnología
Universidad Nacional de Quilmes

olimpiafilo@arnet.com.ar
Martín Labarca
Instituto de Estudios sobre la Ciencia y la Tecnología
Universidad Nacional de Quilmes

mglabarca@unq.edu.ar

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to analyze the differences between the approaches of Boltzmann and Gibbs with respect to the problem of irreversibility. This analysis will allow us to show that, in the discussion about the necessary conditions for irreversibility, it goes often unnoticed that the main difference between the two approaches is the use of different concepts of equilibrium and, as a consequence, of irreversibility. Finally, we will argue that, although in principle both approaches seem completely irreconcilable, there are definite physical conditions under which the results provided by both theoretical frameworks are similar enough to be considered equally admissible for all practical purposes.
Keywords: irreversibility, Boltzmann, Gibbs, ergodicity, degrees of freedom

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