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Second Thermal and Fluids Engineering  Conference

ISSN: 2379-1748
ISBN: 978-1-56700-430-4

Near-field thermal radiation interactions between a probe and a surface


Near-field radiative heat transfer between a probe and a surface is of importance in many potential applications such as near-field thermal spectroscopy and tip-based nanomanufacturing. An analytical solution for this problem is not available due to the complex geometry of the probe. In this work, a numerically exact framework based on fluctuational electrodynamics is used for predicting near-field thermal radiation interactions between a probe and an infinite surface. The surface interactions are treated analytically while the volume integral equation for the electric field, derived from the stochastic Maxwell equations, is discretized using the thermal discrete dipole approximation (T-DDA). The framework is applied to analyze spectral and total radiative heat transfer between a probe and a surface, and the results are compared against the spheroidal electric dipole approximation (Huth et al., Eur. Phys. J. Appl. Phys. 50, 10603, 2010). In addition, the near-field thermal spectrum scattered by the probe in the far field is analyzed, which is of interest in near-field thermal spectroscopy where two independent experimental studies reported resonance redshift of the scattered thermal near field (Babuty et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 146103, 2013; O'Callahan et al., Phys. Rev. B 89, 245446, 2014). It is not clear if the resonance redshift is due to near-field coupling between the probe and the surface or if it is an experimental artifact. This work will answer this fundamental question and will pave the way to the development of spectroscopy techniques enabling measurements of the near-field thermal spectrum.

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