Thermal diode: rectification of heat flux

Phys Rev Lett. 2004 Oct 29;93(18):184301. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.93.184301. Epub 2004 Oct 27.


By coupling two nonlinear one dimensional lattices, we demonstrate a thermal diode model that works in a wide range of system parameters. We provide numerical and analytical evidence for the underlying mechanism which allows heat flux in one direction while the system acts like an insulator when the temperature gradient is reversed. The possible experimental realization in nanoscale systems is briefly discussed.