In Open Systems

3.1 Open systems and their energy balance 41

3.2 The second law of thermodynamics interpreted for open systems 43

3.3 Prigogine's theorem and the evolutionary criterion by Glansdorff-Prigogine 47

3.4 The third law of thermodynamics applied on open systems 50

3.5 Thermodynamics of living organisms 53

3.6 Quantification of openness and allometric principles 56

3.7 The temperature range needed for life processes 62

3.8 Natural conditions for life 63

CHAPTER 4: ENTROPY, PROBABILITY AND INFORMATION 69

4.1 Entropy and probability 69

4.2 Entropy and information 70

4.3 The system as a text and its information entropy 72

4.4 Diversity of biological communities 75

4.5 Simple statistical models of biological communities 77

4.6 Information analysis of the global vegetation pattern 80

4.7 Diversity of the biosphere 84

4.8 Information and evolutionary paradigm: selection of information 87

4.9 Genetic information contained in an organism: hierarchy of information and its redundancy 90

4.10 Summary of the important ecological issues 91

CHAPTER 5: WORK, EXERGY AND INFORMATION 95

5.1 The work done by a system imbedded into an environment 95

5.2 What is exergy? Different interpretations of the exergy concept 100

5.3 Thermodynamic machines 102

5.4 Exergy far from thermodynamic equilibrium 106

5.5 Exergy and information 111

5.6 Exergy of solar radiation 115

5.7 How to calculate the exergy of living organic matter? 118

5.8 Other methods for the exergy calculation 122

5.9 Why have living systems such a high level of exergy? 124

5.10 Summary of the important ecological issues 125

CHAPTER 6: STABILITY IN MATHEMATICS,

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