Thermalization via Heat Radiation of an Individual Object Thinner than the Thermal Wavelength

Author(s): C. Wuttke, A. Rauschenbeutel

Journal: Physical Review Letters

Volume: 111

Page(s): 024301

Year: 2013

DOI Number: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.111.024301

Link: Link to publication


Modeling and investigating the thermalization of microscopic objects with arbitrary shape from first principles is of fundamental interest and may lead to technical applications. Here, we study, over a large temperature range, the thermalization dynamics due to far-field heat radiation of an individual, deterministically produced silica fiber with a predetermined shape and a diameter smaller than the thermal wavelength. The temperature change of the subwavelength-diameter fiber is determined through a measurement of its optical path length in conjunction with an ab initio thermodynamic model of the fiber structure. Our results show excellent agreement with a theoretical model that considers heat radiation as a volumetric effect and takes the emitter shape and size relative to the emission wavelength into account.


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