Phonon thermal transport outside of local equilibrium in nanowires via molecular dynamics

Zhou, Ya; Strachan, Alejandro
March 2013
Journal of Chemical Physics;Mar2013, Vol. 138 Issue 12, p124704
Academic Journal
We study thermal transport through Pt nanowires that bridge planar contacts as a function of wire length and vibrational frequency of the contacts. When phonons in the contacts have lower average frequencies than those in the wires thermal transport occurs under conditions away from local equilibrium with low-frequency phonons experiencing a higher thermal gradient than high-frequency ones. This results in a size-dependent increase in the effective thermal conductivity of the wire with decreasing vibrational frequencies of the contacts. The interfacial resistivity when heat flows from the wire to the contact is also size-dependent and has the same physical origin in the lack of full equilibration in short nanowires. We develop a model based on a 1D atomic chain that captures the salient physics of the MD results.


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