Internal Energy

A property of a system that can be changed by a flow of work, heat or both; it is represented by the symbol E (E represents the change in internal energy of a system) and is given in units of energy (Joules).

Defined so that changes in internal energy are equal to the heat absorbed or released by a process running at constant volume.

While changes in internal energy can be measured using calorimetry, absolute values of internal energy usually cannot be determined.

Changes in internal energy are equal to the heat transferred plus the work done for any process.

See also: Energy, Gibbs Free Energy.

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Subjects: Chemistry