It’s the perfect day for a hot celebration, and that is a major reason for observing National Thermal Engineer Day on July 24 each year. You might not know it, but thermal energy is all around us. This is the energy within any system that is responsible for its temperature. The transfer of this energy from one system to another (think pushing a box across a rough floor) causes heat. On this day, we’re celebrating the contributions of those people that understand and work with heat management, and we’re commemorating the importance of this form of energy in the world.
History of National Thermal Engineer Day
Ancient people linked heat with fire: ancient Indians believed heat was related to mythological origins and Western philosophy believed all substances came from the four elements — water, air, earth, and of course, fire. They also eventually found ways to transfer this heat.
Later, in the early modern period, people thought that heat was due to an invisible fluid they named ‘caloric.’ All bodies were believed to be capable of holding a certain amount of fluid, aka, a heat capacity. Scientists in the 18th and 19th centuries abandoned this idea, understanding that heat was the result of a system’s internal energy.
The discovery of thermal energy is commonly attributed to English physicist, mathematician, and brewer James Prescott Joule. He was reportedly experimenting with fluids and, while agitating one such fluid, he found that its temperature had increased. After working with his team on a mechanical float, he discovered that the heat had been transferred. He had successfully converted mechanical energy to thermal energy. Joule’s claim of being the first to make this discovery was disputed by a German physicist, Julius Robert von Mayer, who said that he had proposed the theory of heat and its transfer at least a year before Joule announced his theory. Eventually, Joule conceded to Mayer’s claim, although he asserted that his experiments were what confirmed this theory. Despite this, most publications give primary recognition to Joule rather than Mayer.
An American engineering and manufacturing company, Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS), wanted to raise awareness about thermal engineers and their contribution to the electronics and engineering industry. They believed in the importance of advancing this industry, and thus, they founded the National Thermal Engineer Day.
National Thermal Engineer Day timeline
Principles of evaporation, convection cooling, and heat radiation are used to chill drinking water on rooftops at night, in one of the earliest examples of heat transfer.
Scottish chemist Joseph Black is the first to name and investigate heat capacity.
Scientists begin to see that heat is essentially the manifestation of a system's energy.
English physicist James Joule conducts experiments that lead to the discovery of thermal energy, however, he is not the first one to use this term.
Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS) establishes National Thermal Engineer Day.
National Thermal Engineer Day FAQs
What does a thermal engineer do?
A thermal engineer has an in-depth understanding of the process of energy conversion from thermal sources into chemical, mechanical, or electrical energy. They also need to know thermodynamics.
What does the word ‘thermal’ mean?
‘Thermal’ means something caused by or related to heat or temperature. This word is also sometimes used in reference to thermal springs (also known as hot springs).
Does thermal mean hot or cold?
The word ‘thermal’ is derived from the Greek word ‘therme,’ which means ‘heat’. Something thermal is usually hot, retains heat, or has a warming effect.
How To Celebrate National Thermal Engineer Day
Celebrate thermal engineers
Without thermal engineering and thermal engineers, the electronics we use every day wouldn’t function properly. So buy the thermal engineer in your life an ice-cold beverage. Don't know any thermal engineers? Give the entire profession a shout-out online by posting about this day.
Spark awareness about this day
One of the main objectives behind this day is to acknowledge the contributions of the men and women in the thermal engineering field. Telling at least one other person about this day allows people to understand the exceptional work done in this field and appreciate the dedication of thermal engineers.
Learn more about thermal engineering
Read up about this field, its applications, and the people who have contributed to thermal engineering over the decades. Their innovations and advancement efforts have made it possible for so many common inventions to flourish. The least we can do is be more knowledgeable about this field.
5 Fun Facts About Thermal Engineering And Energy
It's a hot day for celebrating
July 24 has been recorded as one of the hottest days of the year in the northern hemisphere, which is why Advanced Thermal Solutions, Inc. (ATS) selected this day to celebrate National Thermal Engineer Day.
Thermal energy is not the same as temperature
A cup of water and a gallon of it can have the same temperature, but their thermal energy depends on their volume — the more volume something has, the greater its thermal energy.
Thermal energy is difficult to convert
Unlike other forms of energy, thermal energy is difficult to convert.
Cars use thermal energy, too
The heating and cooling of a car are controlled by thermal management systems integrated into the design.
Thermal energy is not heat
Thermal energy is stored in a system, while heat is what happens when energy is transferred between two objects.
Why We Love National Thermal Engineer Day
Thermal energy is incredibly useful
The range of applications for thermal energy is immense. Thermal energy is used in food and beverages, chemical processing, oil and gas, and energy and power. These solutions are crucial to electronics and engineering, and are important for their longevity and reliable operations. They contribute to technological advancement. Without them, modern life cannot function.
Thermal engineers need a little love, too
They have to solve energy problems. Thermal engineers are in virtually every field — consumer electronics, large data centers, biomedical or aerospace electronics, etc. And yet, these guys receive very little love, despite being integral to many systems worldwide. We believe they need some recognition, and we love that this celebration allows us to thank them from the bottom of our hearts.
This day is celebrated at the perfect time
Summer temperatures are rising and we are gearing up to celebrate a day for those working with heat. It is only fitting we observe this day in July to honor those who study energy applications.
National Thermal Engineer Day dates