Negative entropy: The Negentropy


Entropy is a measure of the dispersal of energy at a specific temperature from the system to the surrounding or otherwise. It is a measure of the randomness or disorder of a system. More randomness in a system corresponds to more entropy.

In the case of solids, the particles are very close to each other because they are arranged in regular order, so solids have less entropy.

The case of liquids is intermediate between solids and liquids.

In the case of gases, the particles are far away from each other. They are more disordered so they have large entropy.

The randomness of the system increases, its entropy increases. According to the 2nd law of thermodynamics, the entropy of the universe for a spontaneous process is always increasing because everything in the universe tends towards a more disordered state spontaneously.



= +

We can never determine the absolute value of entropy. Instead, we can only determine the change in entropy.


dS= d /

At a given temperature heat is transferred reversibly in and out of the system.

=d /

To calculate the difference in entropy between any two states of a system, we find a reversible path between them and integrate the energy supplied as heat at each stage of the path divided by the temperature at which heating occurs.

0 Spontaneous process

0 Non-spontaneous process

=0 Equilibrium process

The term negative entropy does not have any appropriate meaning. The only change in entropy is negative for the non-spontaneous processes.

Examples of negative change in Entropy

When liquid is converted into solid i.e freezing process the transition takes place from high entropy to low entropy. This is because that particles of liquids are more disordered than solid particles. As the randomness of the system decrease so the change of entropy will be negative.

During the condensation process i.e gas is converted into a liquid system moves from a less ordered state to a more ordered state due to a decrease in volume and temperature. So entropy change of system will be negative.

Carbon monoxide CO has less entropy than carbon dioxide CO2 because simpler substances with fewer atoms have lower entropy values than more complex substances with a greater number of atoms.

For similar types of substances, harder substances have a lower entropy value. For example, diamond has lower entropy than graphite because diamond atoms are arranged in regular order. Bromine has high entropy because it tends to spread out.

Entropy changes in reactions

In a chemical reaction, by comparing the entropies of reactants and products we can determine whether the entropy increase or decreases. There are two rules to identify the change in entropy.

  • Change in states of reactants and products
  • Change in number of moles

As gases have high entropy and solids have low entropy. So if reactants are in the gas phase and products are in the solid phase then there will be a negative change in entropy.

Similarly, if there is a greater number of moles in reactants than products there will be a negative change in entropy.

For example,

2Ca(s)+O2(g) → 2CaO(s)

In this case number of moles of reactants are greater than the products and the product is in solid-state so the change in entropy of a system is negative.

Entropy changes for exothermic and endothermic reactions

  • For an exothermic reaction, energy is released by the system to the surrounding so the number of ways of arranging energy increases. Also the chances of spontaneous chemical changes in the surrounding increases which increase the entropy.
  • For endothermic reaction, energy is absorbed into the system so the number of ways of arranging energy decreases which causes the decrease in entropy.

Concepts Berg

negentropy definition

opposite of entropy

is negentropy a constant

is negentropy a part of entropy

what is the formula for negentropy

what is the opposite of entropy

can energy be lost

What does ‘negative entropy’ mean?

Entropy is a measure of disorderliness in a system. If a system tends towards a more disordered state then its entropy increase. And if the transition in a system takes place from a more disordered state to an ordered state its entropy decrease and the change in entropy will be negative.

Is oxidation an example of chemical change?

A chemical change takes place when old bonds are broken and new bonds are formed i.e reactants are converted into products.

Oxidation is defined as the addition of oxygen to any substance to form its oxides or loss of electrons by an atom which is also a chemical change. So, oxidation is an example of chemical change.

Why do some anions (F) have negative entropy?

When an ionic substance that contains cation and anion is dissolved in water, the water molecules surround the positive and negative ions of the substance and form a solvation shell around them. The solvated ions are in a more disordered state than isolated ions and water molecules so it leads to a decrease in entropy.

What does it mean when delta S is negative?

Negative delta S means that the entropy of the product is less than the entropy of reactants. As Gibb’s free energy is

G = H – TS

From this relation, the reaction will always be spontaneous if S is negative, H is negative (for exothermic reaction) at low temperature.

Can you have a negative entropy value?

The negative entropy value does not exist but changes in entropy can be negative. An example of such a process is the freezing of liquid into a solid and condensation process.

Does negative entropy mean spontaneous?

Negative entropy means a decrease in entropy when a system moves from a more disordered state to an ordered state. This is not possible spontaneously.

Why is entropy never negative?

Entropy is the measure of disorders in a system. As everything in the universe tends toward a more disordered state so entropy is always increasing. According to the 2nd law of thermodynamics, the entropy of the universe for spontaneous processes is always increasing. So the overall entropy can never be negative. If the entropy of the system decrease then the entropy of the surrounding must increase to make overall entropy positive.

What does positive entropy mean?

Entropy is a disorderliness in a system. Positive entropy means randomness in a system increase i.e system moves towards a more disordered state. It occurs spontaneously. For example, when liquid is converted into gas during evaporation, the result is positive entropy.

What are examples of positive and negative entropy?

Positive entropy means randomness in a system increase. Boiling and evaporation processes are examples of positive entropy.

Negative entropy means randomness in a system decrease. Freezing and condensation processes are examples of negative entropy.

Is entropy positive or negative for endothermic?

For the endothermic process, heat is added to the system from the surroundings so external entropy(entropy of surroundings) decreases.

In Gibb’s free energy term,

G = H – TS

For the endothermic process, H is positive with positive entropy change, then G depends on temperature. This process is spontaneous if (TS) is greater than H when the temperature is high.

Entropy is positive for endothermic reactions when the enthalpy change is positive.

Entropy is negative for endothermic reactions when the enthalpy change is

What does negative enthalpy of formation mean?

Enthalpy of formation is defined as the amount of heat evolved or absorbed when the compound is formed from its constituents elements. Negative enthalpy of formation means the reaction is exothermic i.e energy required to break bonds is less than the energy released during new bond formation.

What is the entropy principle?

According to the 2nd law of thermodynamics entropy of the universe for spontaneous process always increase. Entropy remains constant for the reversible processes because in reversible processes system is always in equilibrium with the previous state. This is known as the principle of entropy.

What do the units of entropy mean?

Entropy is defined as the amount of heat transferred reversibly per unit temperature.

dS= d/T

So the unit of entropy is joule/kelvin.

What does the negative temperature coefficient mean?

As resistance is a linear function of temperature. But there are some materials in which a rise in temperature causes a decrease in resistance. Such materials are said to have a negative temperature coefficient. For example, carbon has a negative temperature coefficient.

What is entropy energy?

Entropy is related to energy. It is defined as the amount of energy transferred reversibly per unit temperature and this energy is unavailable to do work. Work is obtained from regular ordered of molecular motion and entropy is a measure of disorderliness in a system.

What is entropy other than disorders?

Entropy is a measure of disorders in a system.

In thermodynamics, It is also defined as energy transferred reversibly in and out of the system per unit temperature.

dS= d/T

What is the meaning of isentropic?

Isentropic is a process in which entropy remains unchanged i.e initial entropy is equal to final entropy. It is a process that is adiabatic and reversible.

What does “Q = mcΔt” mean?

This is a formula of specific heat capacity. The amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 g of substance through one kelvin is called specific heat capacity.



Q = heat measured in joules

m = mass of a substance

c = specific heat capacity

T = change in temperature

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