Measurement of Near-Field Radiative Heat Transfer at Deep Sub-Wavelength Distances using Nanomechanical Resonators

Mathieu Giroux, Michel Stephan, Maxime Brazeau, Sean Molesky, Alejandro W. Rodriguez, Jacob J. Krich, Karin Hinzer, Raphael St-Gelais

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Near-field radiative heat transfer (NFRHT) measurements often rely on custom microdevices that can be difficult to reproduce after their original demonstration. Here we study NFRHT using plain silicon nitride (SiN) membrane nanomechanical resonators─a widely available substrate used in applications such as electron microscopy and optomechanics─and on which other materials can easily be deposited. We report measurements down to a minimal distance of 180 nm between a large radius of curvature (15.5 mm) glass radiator and a SiN membrane resonator. At such deep sub-wavelength distance, heat transfer is dominated by surface polariton resonances over a (0.25 mm)2 effective area, which is comparable to plane-plane experiments employing custom microfabricated devices. We also discuss how measurements using nanomechanical resonators create opportunities for simultaneously measuring near-field radiative heat transfer and thermal radiation forces (e.g., thermal corrections to Casimir forces).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8490-8497
Number of pages8
JournalNano Letters
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 27 2023
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • General Materials Science


  • Near-field radiation
  • nanomechanical resonators
  • surface polariton
  • thermal radiation


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