The simulation below depicts random elastic collisions of units in a container.
JavaScript version courtesy of Prof Bob Hanson.

The simulation graphically presents a profile of the distribution of energy among these units during the process where a large number of collisions occur.

The following items are selectable:
A target and projectile are selected at random and the energy lost by the projectile to the target is also selected at random. This process continues for the selected number of collisions, which can be over 100,000.

The initial energy distribution is one in which all the units have the same energy. By varying the number of collisions it is possible by monitoring Ln W to see how many are required before an "equilibrium" distribution results. This appears as a Boltzmann-like curve.

To note

The values in the textbox show the population of the energy levels and the value of Ln W taken at 100 intervals throughout the simulation. Use the right mouse button to click in the textbox to copy the information to the clipboard for use in a Spreadsheet (via Ctr-C and Ctr-V copy and paste).

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Created and maintained by Prof. Robert J. Lancashire,
The Department of Chemistry, University of the West Indies,
Mona Campus, Kingston 7, Jamaica.
Created April 1995. Links checked and/or last modified 10th November 2015.