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A group of physics students studies gas behavior with a cylinder with a moveable piston head and a temperature sensor. The students compress the gas by quickly pushing the piston head into the cylinder. With this action, they notice the temperature of the gas momentarily increasing.

Which explanation below correctly uses the kinetic theory of gases to explain why the temperature increases?

A

The impulse applied by the piston is greater than the total molecular change in momentum, so the temperature must increase.

B

After compression the molecules have less volume in which to move, so the increased density leads to increased temperature.

C

The molecules did positive work on the piston head, and that is what increased the temperature of the gas.

D

The piston head did positive work on some of the molecules, increasing their average kinetic energy.

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