In physics, thermodynamics (from the Greek θερμ-<θερμότης, therme, meaning "heat" and δυναμις, dynamis, meaning "power") is the study of energy conversion between heat and mechanical work, and subsequently the macroscopic variables such as temperature, volume, and pressure. Its progenitor, based on statistical predictions of the collective motion of particles from their microscopic behavior, is the field of statistical thermodynamics (or statistical mechanics), a branch of statistical physics. Historically, thermodynamics developed out of the need to increase the efficiency of early steam engines.

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