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Journal Article

Time-Dependent Thermal Transport Theory


Rubio,  Angel
Theory Department, Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter, Max Planck Society;
Nano-Bio Spectroscopy Group and European Theoretical Spectroscopy Facility (ETSF), Universidad del País Vasco, E-20018 San Sebastián, Spain;

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Biele, R., D'Agosta, R., & Rubio, A. (2015). Time-Dependent Thermal Transport Theory. Physical Review Letters, 115(5): 056801. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.115.056801.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0028-2CDF-D
Understanding thermal transport in nanoscale systems presents important challenges to both theory and experiment. In particular, the concept of local temperature at the nanoscale appears difficult to justify. Here, we propose a theoretical approach where we replace the temperature gradient with controllable external blackbody radiations. The theory recovers known physical results, for example, the linear relation between the thermal current and the temperature difference of two blackbodies. Furthermore, our theory is not limited to the linear regime and goes beyond accounting for nonlinear effects and transient phenomena. Since the present theory is general and can be adapted to describe both electron and phonon dynamics, it provides a first step toward a unified formalism for investigating thermal and electronic transport.