Energy dissipation in small-scale shape-change dynamics
Phys. Rev. E, Volume 85, p.020104 (2012)
Shape is an important feature of physical systems, although very seldom it is addressed in the framework of a quantitative description approach. In this paper we propose to interpret the shape of things as a physical manifestation of the content of information associated with each thing and show that a change of shape in a physical system is necessarily connected with a change of its entropy and thus involves energy. We estimate the amount of energy dissipated during a shape change and propose experimental tests to be performed in nanoscale systems to verify this prediction by measuring the expected dissipation in a few simple cases. Relevant implications in the design of future zero-power logic switches are discussed.
file available at: arXiv:1109.3923v2