energy, equipartition of
Law of statistical mechanics stating that, in a system in thermal equilibrium, on average, an equal amount of energy is associated with each independent energy state. It states specifically that a system of particles in equilibrium at absolute temperature T will have an average energy of kT, where k is the Boltzmann constant, associated with each degree of freedom. For example, an atom of a gas has three degrees of freedom (its three position coordinates); therefore, it will have an average total energy of kT.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on energy, equipartition of, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up energy, equipartition of? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.