A HEAT TRANSFER TEXTBOOK: A free electronic textbook
Professor John H. Lienhard V
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
We are placing a mechanical engineering textbook into an electronic format for
worldwide, no-charge distribution. The aim of this effort is to explore the possibilities of
placing textbooks online --- effectively giving them away. Two potential benefits should
accrue from doing this. First, in electronic format, textbooks can be continually corrected
and updated, without the delays inherent in printed books (second and later editions are
typically published on a five-year cycle). Second, free textbooks hold the potential for
fundamentally altering the economics of higher education, particularly in those
environments where money is scarce.
The book in question is a senior-level text on heat and mass transfer, the third edition of
A Heat Transfer Textbook, by John H. Lienhard IV and John H. Lienhard V. It was
published in two print editions in the 1980’s and was used across the US and
internationally. It remained in print until some five years ago. The authors now hold all
rights to the work. The electronic book is currently being alpha-tested at MIT and will be
made available to the general public in the near future.
John H. Lienhard V, who is leading the revision, is a full professor at MIT working in the
fields of heat transfer and fluid mechanics. He is the recipient of teaching awards at MIT
and research awards from ASME1 and other organizations. He is a Fellow of the ASME.
John H. Lienhard IV is internationally known for his work in heat transfer and thermal
science, which spans some 40 years of research and teaching. He is a professor at the
University of Houston and the creator of the program Engines of Our Ingenuity which is
heard on Public Radio nationally. He is an Honorary Member of ASME and has
received many awards for his research, his teaching, and his radio program.