William John Macquorn Rankine (July 2, 1820 - December 24, 1872) was a Scottish engineer and physicist. He was a founding contributor of the science of thermodynamics. Rankine developed a fully complete theory of the steam engine. His steam engine manuals and other such engines were used for many decades.
He served as professor of engineering at the University of Glasgow from 1855. He contributed to civil and mechanical engineering as well as to thermodynamics. His research included: forces in frame structures, molecular physics, metal fatigue, soil mechanics, earth pressures, and the stability of retaining walls.
Rankine was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1853.
He was born in Edinburgh and died in Glasgow.
Manual of Applied Mechanics (1858)
Manual of the Steam Engine and Other Prime Movers (1859)
On the Thermodynamic Theory of Waves of Finite Longitudinal Disturbance