Acad Sinica, Inst High Energy Phys, Beijing 100039, Peoples R China
; Acad Sinica, Inst Theoret Phys, Beijing 100080, Peoples R China
; Beijing Normal Univ, Dept Phys, Beijing 100875, Peoples R China
; Acad Sinica, Inst High Energy Phys, Beijing 100039, Peoples R China
It is shown that the first law of thermodynamics can be applied to the de Sitter universe to relate its vacuum energy, pressure, entropy of horizon, chemical potential, etc., when the cosmological constant changes due to the fluctuation of the vacuum or other reasons. The second law should be reformulated in the form that the spontaneous decay of the vacuum never makes the entropy of the de Sitter universe decrease. The third law of thermodynamics, applying to the de Sitter universe, implies that the cosmological constant cannot reach zero by finite physical processes. The relation to the holographic principle is also briefly discussed.