MINIMAL PRINCIPLES 1)2)
J.H. MILSUM found that: "A number of minimal principles, that is, equivalently optimality principles, are recognized in physics". Examples offered are FERMAT's Principles of least time propagation of light in media of different refractive indices; MAUPERTUIS's Principle of Least Action, and the "most general minimal principle of physics called HAMILTON's Principle".
MILSUM proposes "A generalized verbal formulation of such principles… as follows: The particular solution "selected" by a process in a physical system will be that one out of the possible family of solutions, all consistent with given constraints, which minimizes a certain "cost" (1968, p.46).
MILSUM proceeds with this comment, very basic from a systemic viewpoint: "The major drawback to universal application is that only conservative systems can be so treated" This is a result of "the ubiquity of dissipative phenomena" (Ibid).
The validity of any minimal principle is thus conditioned by the existence of steady-states thermodynamics, but ceases in far-from equilibrium conditions.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
- 5) Discipline oriented
To cite this page, please use the following information:
Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
We thank the following partners for making the open access of this volume possible: