Monday, May 16, 2011

Planck's Law Breaks Down

In 1900 Max Planck described how energy dissipates from any nonreflective object. But Planck said if something else is really, really close to the object, the law might break down. Research reveals that heat transfer rules from a nonreflective object (Planck's blackbody radiation law) break down if the object is brought close enough to another object, but not touching.

Researchers placed flat plates a 10 billionths of a meter apart and radiation flow was 1,000 times greater than Planck’s law predicts. The findings have implications for computer storage and solar energy devices which become less efficient because of heat buildup.

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