Translation of J. D. van der Waals' “The thermodynamik theory of capillarity under the hypothesis of a continuous variation of density”

@article{Rowlinson1979TranslationOJ,
  title={Translation of J. D. van der Waals' “The thermodynamik theory of capillarity under the hypothesis of a continuous variation of density”},
  author={John Shipley Rowlinson},
  journal={Journal of Statistical Physics},
  year={1979},
  volume={20},
  pages={197-200}
}
  • J. S. Rowlinson
  • Published 1 February 1979
  • Mathematics
  • Journal of Statistical Physics
Van der Waals justifies the choice of minimization of the (Helmholtz) free energy as the criterion of equilibrium in a liquid-gas system (Sections 1–4). If densityρ is a function of heighth then the local free energy density differs from that of a homogeneous fluid by a term proportional to (d2ρ/dh2); the extra term arises from the energy not from the entropy (Section 5). He uses this result to show howρ varies withh (Section 6), how this variation leads to a stable minimum free energy (Section… 
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A long-wave approximation is used to derive the evolution of a liquid nanofilm on a substrate and establishes that the driving pressure in the nan ofilm should be associated with the mean value of the component of the pressure tensor tangential to the liquid interface (along the substrate).
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When we find a substance capable of existing in two fluid states different in density and other properties while the temperature and pressure are the same in both, and when we find also that an
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