Cheat Sheet
Thermodynamics For Dummies Cheat Sheet
Thermodynamics sounds intimidating, and it can be. However, if you hone in on the most important thermodynamic formulas and equations, get comfortable converting from one unit of physical measurement to another, and become familiar with the physical constants related to thermodynamics, you’ll be at the head of the class.
Important Thermodynamic Equations and Formulas
Thermodynamics is filled with equations and formulas. Here’s a list of the most important ones you need to do the calculations necessary for solving thermodynamics problems.

Combustion equations:

Airfuel ratio:

Hydrocarbon fuel combustion reaction:


Compressibility calculations:

Compressibility factor Z: Pv = ZRT

Reduced temperature:

Reduced pressure:

Pseudoreduced specific volume:


Efficiency equations:

Thermal efficiency:

Coefficient of performance (refrigerator):

Coefficient of performance (heat pump):


Energy equations:

Entropy equations:

Entropy change for ideal gas, constant specific heat:

Entropy change for ideal gas, variable specific heat:

Irreversibility for a process:


Idealgas formulas:

Idealgas law: Pv = RT

Gas constant:

Ratio of specific heats:

Isentropic process for ideal gas:


Moist air properties:

Relative humidity:

Specific humidity:


Properties of mixtures:

Quality liquidvapor mixture:

Saturated mixture property, y: y = y_{f} + x · y_{fg}_{}


Work calculations:

Isobaric process: W_{b} = P_{0}(V_{2} – V_{1})

Polytropic process:

Isothermal process of an ideal gas:

Shaft power:

Spring work:

Conversion Factors for Physical Measurements
Sooner or later, you’re going to have to convert from one unit of physical measurement to another. This list gives you some of the most common conversion factors you need in thermodynamics.

Acceleration: 1 m/s^{2} = 100 cm/s^{2}

Area: 1 m^{2} = 10^{4} cm^{2} = 10^{6} mm^{2}

Density: 1 g/cm^{3} = 1 kg/L = 1,000 kg/m^{3}

Energy, heat, work, internal energy, enthalpy: 1 kJ = 1,000 J = 1,000 N·m = 1 kPa·m^{3}
1 kJ/kg = 1,000 m^{2}/s^{2}

Force: 1 N = 1 kg·m/s^{2}

Length: 1 m = 100 cm = 1,000 mm

Mass: 1 kg = 1,000 g

Power, heat transfer rate: 1 W = 1 J/s, 1 kW = 1,000 W

Pressure: 1 Pa = 1 N/m^{2}, 1 kPa = 1,000 kPa, 1 MPa = 1,000 kPa
1 atmosphere (atm) = 101.325 kPa

Specific heat, entropy: 1 kJ/kg · °C = 1 kJ/kg · K = 1 J/g·°C

Specific volume: 1 m^{3}/kg = 1,000 L/kg = 1,000 cm^{3}/kg

Temperature: T(K) = T(°C) + 273.15, T(°C) = (5/9) T(°F) – 32, T(°F) = (9/5) T(°C) + 32

Velocity: 1m/s = 3.6 km/hr

Volume: 1 m^{3} = 1,000 L = 10^{6} cm^{3}
Physical Constants in Thermodynamics
You run across a few physical constants when working out thermodynamics problems. Following is a list of the constants you need when you’re working with potential energy, pressure, or the ideal gas law.

Acceleration of gravity: g = 9.81 m/s^{2}

Standard atmospheric pressure: 1 atm = 101.3 kPa^{}

Universal gas constant: