Volume 84, Number 4, November 2008
Article Number 40009
Number of page(s) 5
Section General
Published online 13 November 2008
EPL, 84 (2008) 40009
DOI: 10.1209/0295-5075/84/40009

Ratcheting heat flux against a thermal bias

N. Li1, P. Hänggi1, 2 and B. Li1, 3

1   Department of Physics and Centre for Computational Science and Engineering, National University of Singapore - Singapore 117542, Republic of Singapore
2   Institut für Physik, Universität Augsburg - Universitätsstr. 1, D-86135 Augsburg, Germany
3   NUS Graduate School for Integrative Sciences and Engineering - Singapore 117597, Republic of Singapore

received 14 August 2008; accepted in final form 13 October 2008; published November 2008
published online 13 November 2008

Merely rocking the temperature in one heat bath can direct a steady heat flux from cold to hot against a (time-averaged) non-zero thermal bias in stylized nonlinear lattice junctions that are sandwiched between two heat baths. Likewise, for an average zero-temperature difference between the two contacts a net, ratchet-like heat flux emerges. Computer simulations show that this very heat flux can be manipulated and even reversed by suitably tailoring the frequency ($\lesssim$ 100 MHz) of the alternating-temperature field.

05.40.-a - Fluctuation phenomena, random processes, noise, and Brownian motion.
07.20.Pe - Heat engines; heat pumps; heat pipes.
05.90.+m - Other topics in statistical physics, thermodynamics, and nonlinear dynamical systems.

© EPLA 2008