Properties and State

Concept of properties and state


Property is any characteristic or attribute which can be quantitatively evaluated.

  • Pressure, temperature, velocity, energy, etc. are all properties

Things that are done, like work or heat flow, are not properties.


The state of an object is its condition described by a list of properties. For example

  • temperature and pressure may describe the state of a gas

The properties needed to describe the state of an object varies with the object and the microscopic versus macroscopic view of the object.

Some common states and their often used properties:

StateCommon Properties
describing the state
Chemical chemical composition, free charge, energy, entropy etc.
Electromagnetic electric field strength, magnetic dipole moment, charge, etc.
Aesthetic color, design, odor, etc
Geometric length, width, breadth, volume, etc.
Hydrodynamic pressure, shearing stress, strain rate, etc.
Kinematic position, speed, acceleration, etc.
Thermodynamic energy, temperature, volume, pressure, enthalpy, entropy, etc.

Related Topics

  • Basics - The SI-system, unit converters, physical constants, drawing scales and more
  • Thermodynamics - Effects of work, heat and energy on systems

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