*Chronology of Thermodynamics, Statistical Mechanics, and Random Processes
*

1761 | Joseph Black discovers that ice absorbs heat without changing temperature when melting. |

1798 | Count Rumford has the idea that heat is a form of energy. |

1822 | Joseph Fourier formally introduces the use of dimensions for physical quantities in his Theorie Analytique de la Chaleur. |

1824 | Sadi Carnot scientifically analyzes the efficiency of steam engines. |

1827 |
Robert Brown discovers the Brownian motion of pollen and dye particles in water. |

1834 | Benoit-Pierre Clapeyron presents a formulation of the second law of thermodynamics. |

1843 | James Joule experimentally finds the mechanical equivalent of heat. |

1848 | Lord Kelvin discovers the absolute zero point of temperature. |

1852 | James Joule and Lord Kelvin demonstrate that a rapidly expanding gas cools. |

1859 | James Clerk Maxwell discovers the distribution law of molecular velocities. |

1870 | Rudolph Clausius proves the scalar virial theorem. |

1872 | Ludwig Boltzmann states the Boltzmann equation for the temporal development of distribution functions in phase space. |

1874 | Lord Kelvin formally states the second law of thermodynamics. |

1876 | Josiah Gibbs begins a two-year long series of papers which discusses phase equilibria, the free energy as the driving force behind chemical reactions, and chemical thermodynamics in general. |

1879 | Josef Stefan observes that the total radiant flux from a blackbody is proportional to the fourth power of its temperature. |

1884 | Ludwig Boltzmann derives the Stefan-Boltzmann blackbody radiant flux law from thermodynamic considerations. |

1888 | Henri-Louis Le Chatelier states that the response of a chemical system perturbed from equilbrium will be to counteract the perturbation. |

1893 | Wilhelm Wien discovers the displacement law for a blackbody's maximum specific intensity. |

1905 | Albert Einstein mathematically analyzes the Brownian motion. |

1906 | Walther Nernst presents a formulation of the third law of thermodynamics. |

1910 | Albert Einstein and Marian Smoluchowski find the Einstein-Smoluchowski formula for the attenuation coefficient due to density fluctuations in a gas. |

1916 | Sydney Chapman and David Enskog systematically develop a kinetic theory of gases. |

1919 | James Jeans discovers that the dynamical constants of motion determine the distribution function for a system of particles. |

1920 | Meghnad Saha states his ionization equation. |

1923 | Pieter Debye and Erich Huckel publish a statistical treatment of the dissociation of electrolytes. |

1928 | J.B. Johnson discovers Johnson noise in a resistor. |

1928 | Harry Nyquist derives the fluctuation-dissipation relationship for a resistor to explain Johnson noise. |

1942 | J.L. Doob states his theorem on Gaussian-Markoff processes. |

1957 | A.S. Kompaneets derives his Compton scattering Fokker-Planck equation. |