Person: Dupré, Athanase
Athanase Dupré was a French mathematician who worked on number theory and the mechanical theory of heat.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- We have not found a date of birth for Paul Dupré.
- After the award of his degree, Dupré was appointed to the Collège Royal in Rennes.
- Édouard Louis Athanase, born 11 July 1839 in Rennes, became professor at the Lycée in Cherbourg and become a Knight of the Légion d'Honneur.
- Pierre Louis Athanase, born 24 February 1842 in Rennes, became a captain in the navy and an Officer of the Légion d'Honneur.
- Raphaël Athanase, born 22 September 1843 in Rennes, studied at the École Polytechnique, became director of marine engineering and also became an Officer of the Légion d'Honneur.
- In 1847 Dupré was appointed to the chair of applied mathematics in the Faculty of Science at Rennes.
- When Dupré was appointed, the Faculty was housed on the first floor of the north wing in the Rennes City Hall, but new buildings were planned and these were completed in 1855.
- In 1866 Dupré was appointed dean of the Faculty after the previous dean, the chemist Faustino Malaguti (1802-1878), had been appointed rector of Rennes Academy.
- For the first part of his career, from 1826 until 1859, Dupré contributed to a number of different areas in mathematics and physics.
- In the second of these papers Dupré discussed calculating the greatest common divisor of two Gaussian integers.
- It looks as if Dupré was somewhat unhappy with the reaction to his work in number theory.
- His work had a major influence on François Jacques Dominique Massieu (1832-1896), a French engineer known for introducing 'free entropy' in 1869, who was a colleague of Dupré's in Rennes during the 1860s.
- During the 1860s Dupré published a series of memoirs on the mechanical theory of heat in the Annales de Chimie et de Physique.
- In his fifth, sixth and seventh memoirs on the mechanical theory of heat Athanase Dupré applied the principles of thermodynamics to capillary action.
- In 1866 Athanase and Paul Dupré jointly published the article On the law of the union of simple substances, and on attractions at small distances.
- Some of Dupré's contributions in the 1860s certainly made a very considerable impact.
- to conclude the marvels of the microscope, we cannot do better than mention a rather new discovery which is inserted in a memoir read at the 'Académie des Sciences' (1866), by M Athanase Dupré.
- M Dupré has proved that a cube of water, visible only with a powerful microscope, contains more than a hundred and twenty-five thousand millions of molecules.
- Sauzay was not the only one amazed by the result Dupré's.
- the ideas of Athanase Dupré ...
- Thus, Lord Rayleigh stated: "we cannot do better than follow the method of Dupré".
- Dupré popularised the notion of surface tension which he called 'force contractile'.
- We have mentioned above the influence that Dupré had on Willard Gibbs who was interested in Dupré's work on surface tension as well as many other parts of his work on thermodynamics.
- Dupré entered for the Academy of Sciences' Bordin prize for 1866 with the same 'half success' as his entry on number theory.
- The quality of this book was noted by Maxwell in a paper of 20 May 1876, in which he describes Dupré's book as "very ingenious memoirs".
- Dupré's work on thermodynamics was also taken up by philosophers who saw that it said something fundamental about the universe.
- For example, Elme Marie Caro, the professor of philosophy in Paris, was influenced by Dupré's work.
- In 1866 Dupré had pointed out that although the first law of thermodynamics might seem to lead to an indefinite duration of the present order of nature, this was not the case if the second law was taken into account.
- .' Dupré argued that the second law can have operated only in a finite span of time, and Caro adopted his argument.
- Neither Dupré nor Caro concluded that the world must therefore have been created by God, but it is clear from Caro's exposition that he considered the entropic argument as a welcome support for a divinely created universe.
- Dupré received relatively little in the way of honours for his mathematical work in view of its importance and its quality.
Born 28 December 1808, Cerisiers, France. Died 10 August 1869, Rennes, France.
View full biography at MacTutor
Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive