Evolutionary Essays:

A Thermodynamic Interpretation of the Evolution


  • Sven Erik Jørgensen, Royal Danish School of Pharmacy, Copenhagen, Denmark

Evolution is nature’s most fascinating process, the possibility given sufficient time to combine simple inorganic compounds to more and more complex biochemical compounds, which make up more and more complex organisms. It is therefore crucial in our effort to understand the evolution to see it from as many different angles as possible. This books draw an image of evolution from the thermodynamic viewpoint, which gives new and surprising insights into the processes and mechanisms that have driven evolution. This new thermodynamic interpretation has made it possible to quantify the various steps of evolution and to show that evolution has followed an exponential growth curve.
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Biologists, ecologists and physicists (both students and researchers)with particular interest in the evolution.


Book information

  • Published: July 2008
  • Imprint: ELSEVIER
  • ISBN: 978-0-444-52996-1

Table of Contents

Part 1: Thermodynamics, Ecosystems and the Evolutionary Mechanisms.

1. An introduction to thermodynamics and information theory.
2. Thermodynamic and the evolutionary process.
3. The evolutionary mechanisms.
4. Extreme Environment.
Part 2: History of Biological Evolution from a Thermodynamic Point of View. Eco-Exergy as a Criterion of Selection in Macro-evolution.
5. The evolution of the Universe.
6. From Inorganic to Poly-organic Compounds.
7. From Poly-organic Compounds to Eukaryote Cells.
8. Pluricellular Organization and the Cambrian Explosion.
9. From the Ordovician Period to the Jurassic Period.
10. The Evolution from Dinosaurs to Birds and Mammals.
11. From Primates to Human.
Part 3: A holistic thermodynamic interpretation of the Evolution.
12.The three growth forms and the evolution.
13. The evolution of diversity.
14. Eco-exergy and ascendency.
15. The evolution of ecological networks.
16. Summary of the Evolution of Eco-exergy and Discussion of the Evolutionary Possibilities in the Future.
17. A holistic picture of evolutionary thermodynamics.