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2019-11-06 08:52:20
CARNOT, Nicolas Leonard Sadi.
Réflexions sur la puissance motrice du feu et sur les machines propres à développer cette puissance.
Paris: Giraudet for Bachelier, 1824. First edition. First edition, very rare, and a fine copy in original state, of Carnot's only published work, which led directly to the first and second laws of thermodynamics. "Carnot, one of the most original thinkers among physical scientists, applied himself to the analysis of the cyclical operation of [heat] engines" (Dibner). "Carnot's treatise on the motive power of heat, which contains the first (albeit imperfect) statement of the second law of thermodynamics, was written to address a practical engineering problem that had occupied French physicists since 1815 - namely, how heat could be used most economically in the production of motive power ... Carnot's originality lay in his recognition that the motive power of a heat engine was independent of the nature of the substance generating it - that it was a function, instead, of the transfer of heat from a warmer to a colder body. He also introduced the fundamental thermodynamic concept of completeness of cycle, in which the engine and working substance return to their original conditions. Carnot's achievement was largely ignored by his contemporaries, and the Réflexions remained forgotten until rediscovered by William Thomson (Lord Kelvin) in the 1840s; Kelvin, one of the founders of modern thermodynamics, said of Carnot's work that 'nothing in the whole range of natural philosophy is more remarkable than the establishment of general laws by such a process of reasoning' (quoted in Fox, p. 1). The first edition of Réflexions was published in an edition of six hundred copies (see Fox, … [Click Below for Full Description]
Bookseller: SOPHIA RARE BOOKS [Denmark]

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