Condensed Matter Theory

Svend-Age Biehs Dynamical quantum theory of heat transfer between plasmonic nanosystems

Author(s): Svend-Age Biehs, Girish S. Agarwal

Dynamical quantum theory of heat transfer between plasmonic nanosystems

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Article: JOSA B, Vol. 30, Issue 3, pp. 700-707 (2013), Optical Society of America

Keywords: nanosystems, heat transfer, nanoparticles, localized surface modes, quantum dynamics, master equation, Rabi oscillations

We develop a dynamical theory of heat transfer between two nanosystems. In particular, we consider the resonant heat transfer between two nanoparticles due to the coupling of localized surface modes having a finite spectral width. We model the coupled nanosystem by two coupled quantum mechanical oscillators, each interacting with its own heat bath, and obtain a master equation for the dynamics of heat transfer. The damping rates in the master equation are related to the lifetimes of localized plasmons in the nanoparticles. We study the dynamics towards the steady state and establish connection with the standard theory of heat transfer in steady state. For strongly coupled nanoparticles we predict Rabi oscillations in the mean occupation number of surface plasmons in each nanoparticle.

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