Volume 81, Number 2, January 2008
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Published online||10 December 2007|
Efficiency at maximum power: An analytically solvable model for stochastic heat engines
II. Institut für Theoretische Physik, Universität Stuttgart - 70550 Stuttgart, Germany
Accepted: 13 November 2007
We study a class of cyclic Brownian heat engines in the framework of finite-time thermodynamics. For infinitely long cycle times, the engine works at the Carnot efficiency limit producing, however, zero power. For the efficiency at maximum power, we find a universal expression, different from the endoreversible Curzon-Ahlborn efficiency. Our results are illustrated with a simple one-dimensional engine working in and with a time-dependent harmonic potential.
PACS: 05.40.Jc – Brownian motion / 05.70.Ln – Nonequilibrium and irreversible thermodynamics / 82.70.Dd – Colloids
© EPLA, 2008
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