The process of thermalization in many-body systems is driven by complex interactions among subsystems and a surrounding environment. Here we lay the theoretical foundations for the active control of local thermal states in arbitrary nonreciprocal systems close to their equilibrium state. In particular we describe how to (i) force some part of the system to evolve according to a prescribed law during the relaxation process (i.e., thermal targeting probem), (ii) insulate some elements from the rest of the system, or (iii) synchronize their evolution during the relaxation process. We also derive the general conditions a system must fulfill in order that some parts relax toward a minimal temperature with a minimum energetic cost or relax toward a prescribed temperature with a minimum time. Finally, we consider several representative examples in the context of systems exchanging heat radiatively.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)