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Energy Transport for Nanostructured Materials

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Front. Energy Res. | doi: 10.3389/fenrg.2018.00009

Nonlinear Heat Radiation induces Thermal Rectifier in Asymmetric Holey Composites

  • 1Tongji University, China

Asymmetric design and nonlinearity are essential to give rise to thermal rectification. In addition to the linear Fourier's law of thermal conduction, we introduce the nonlinear thermal radiation following Stefan-Boltzmann law to asymmetric holey composites to realize the thermal rectifier. The thermal rectification results from the competition between the linear thermal conduction and the nonlinear thermal radiation, which we explain as a thermal resistor network with the linear and nonlinear components connected in series-parallel. All the results are confirmed by an analytically-solvable model that is composed of one central nonlinear thermal radiation region sandwiched by two linear conduction regions with different conductances. We can get the optimal rectification effect around the room temperature when the temperature difference is fixed, which allows the application of the designed materials to energy-saving buildings.

Keywords: Thermal rectification, Thermal radiation, non reciprocal heat transfer, metamaterial, Heat conduction, Thermal diode, Energy conservation

Received: 22 Dec 2017; Accepted: 14 Feb 2018.

Edited by:

Nuo Yang, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China

Reviewed by:

Qiang Cheng, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China
Dahai He, Xiamen University, China  

Copyright: © 2018 Zhu, Wu, Chen and Ren. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. Jie Ren, Tongji University, Shanghai, China,