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Convergence of Vector Spherical Wave Expansion Method Applied to Near-Field Radiative Transfer

Sasihithlu, Karthik; Narayanaswamy, Arvind

Near-field radiative transfer between two objects can be computed using Rytov’s theory of fluctuational electrodynamics in which the strength of electromagnetic sources is related to temperature through the fluctuation-dissipation theorem, and the resultant energy transfer is described using the dyadic Green’s function of the vector Helmholtz equation. When the two objects are spheres, the dyadic Green’s function can be expanded in a series of vector spherical waves. Based on comparison with the convergence criterion for the case of radiative transfer between two parallel surfaces, we derive a relation for the number of vector spherical waves required for convergence in the case of radiative transfer between two spheres. We show that when electromagnetic surface waves are active at a frequency the number of vector spherical waves required for convergence is proportional to Rmax /d when d/Rmax → 0, where Rmax is the radius of the larger sphere, and d is the smallest gap between the two spheres. This criterion for convergence applies equally well to other near-field electromagnetic scattering problems.


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Optical Society of America

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Academic Units
Mechanical Engineering
Published Here
April 3, 2013