MIT school of thermodynamics

In thermodynamics schools, MIT school of thermodynamics or Keenan school of thermodynamics are centered around the publications of American mechanical engineer Joseph Keenan and Hungarian-born American physicist László Tisza, professors at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). As one 1963 article starts out: [3]

“The paper is most profitably read with a background of study of other writings attributable to Professor Keenan and his well-known school of thermodynamics.”

The science of quantum thermodynamics was first outlined by Tisza, while at MIT.

Between 1834 and 1961, American Joseph Keenan was a professor and later head of the department of mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and while there he established what has been come to be known as the "Keenan School of Thermodynamics”. [1] Keenan is known for his calculation of steam tables, research in jet-rocket propulsion, and his work in furthering the understanding of the laws of thermodynamics. His classic 1941 textbook Thermodynamics served as a fundamental teaching tool in various engineering curricula during the 1940s and 1950s. Keenan brought to the mechanical engineering profession the fundamental work of Willard Gibbs.

The faculty of MIT, during the summer session of 1953, under the guidance of Keenan, organized a Rumford summer school of thermodynamics in celebration of Count Rumford (Benjamin Thomson) Bicentennial: During Summer Session 1953, from Monday, June 29, to Friday, July 10, Inclusive. [2]
Notables associated this school include George Hatsopoulos and Gian Beretta, the latter of which states that he ran a “thermodynamics think tank” at MIT in the late 1990s. The website, run by Beretta, lists publications by members of the “Keenan school of thermodynamics”.

Hungarian-born American physicist László Tisza, a physics professor at MIT from 1941 to 1973, with his 1966 textbook Generalized Thermodynamics, and his doctoral student Herbert Callen, and his 1985 Thermodynamics and Introduction to Thermostatistics, are both of the MIT school of thermodynamics.

American thermodynamicist Myron Tribus, noted for the coining of the terms “thermostatics” (1956) and “thermoeconomics” (1962), was the director for the Center for Advanced Engineering at MIT from 1974 to 1986.

1. Selected publications on Quantum Thermodynamics – Gian-Paolo Beretta.
2. By Rumford Summer School of Thermodynamics (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Published by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1953.
3. Anon. (1963). “article” (quote, pg. 314). Journal of Applied Mathematics, Vol. 30.

TDics icon ns

More pages