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Title: Henri Poincaré: The Status of Mechanical Explanations and the Foundations of Statistical Mechanics
Authors: Príncipe, João
Editors: DiSalle, Roberto
Paz, Maria de
Keywords: Henri Poincaré
Statistical Mechanics
History of Science
Philosophy of Science
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Springer
Citation: PRÍNCIPE, João (2014) « The status of mechanical explanations and the foundations of statistical mechanics » in DISALLE, Roberto di e PAZ, María (eds.), Poincaré, philosopher of science problems and perspectives, The Western Ontario Series in Philosophy of Science 79, Springer, 127-151.
Abstract: The first goal of this paper is to show the evolution of Poincaré’s opinion on the mechanistic reduction of the principles of thermodynamics, placing it in the context of the science of his time. The second is to present some of his work in 1890 on the foundations of statistical mechanics. He became interested first in thermodynamics and its relation with mechanics, drawing on the work of Helm-holtz on monocyclic systems. After a period of skepticism concerning the kinetic theory, he read some of Maxwell’s memories and contributed to the foundations of statistical mechanics. I also show that Poincaré's contributions to the founda-tions of statistical mechanics are closely linked to his work in celestial mechanics and its interest in probability theory and its role in physics.
ISBN: 978-94-017-8780-2
Type: bookPart
Appears in Collections:CEHFC - Publicações - Capítulos de Livros

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