Question

# What is intensive and extensive properties of thermodynamics?

Solution

## Extensive properties are the properties which are dependent on the mass or size of the system. Intensive properties on the other hand, do not depend on the mass or size of the systems being measured.   Consider a mass of gas in a container. It has several properties such as pressure, temperature, volume, internal energy, enthalpy, entropy, density etc. Now split the container into two equal halves, take any one half and measure the properties. Did they change? Then they are extensive properties. If not they are intensive. After splitting the container in two, the volume, the internal energy, enthalpy, entropy would all have dropped to half the original values, as there is only half the mass of the gas left. All these would therefore be extensive properties. However, even after taking half the gas in one half of the container, it would still have the same pressure, temperature, specific heat capacity, density etc. These would therefore be extensive properties. You can convert an extensive property to a intensive one by dividing it by mass. Example: For example, dividing volume by mass gives specific volume(m3/kg), which is an intensive property. Similarly, we can get specific enthalpy(J/kg), specific entropy(J/kgK) etc, which are values on a per kg basis.

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