Many processes can be approximated by the law:
n= an index depending on the process type.
Polytropic processes are internally reversible. Some examples are vapors and
perfect gases in many non-flow processes, such as:
Some polytropic processes are shown in figure below:
The initial state of working fluid is shown by point 0 on the P-V diagram. The polytropic state changes are:
- 0 to 1= constant pressure heating,
- 0 to 2= constant volume heating,
- 0 to 3= reversible adiabatic compression,
- 0 to 4= isothermal compression,
- 0 to 5= constant pressure cooling,
- 0 to 6= constant volume cooling,
- 0 to 7= reversible adiabatic expansion,
- 0 to 8= isothermal expansion.
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