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Control of electronic heat flows in coupled quantum dots Sanchez, Rafael


Electronic charge and heat flows can be separated in three-terminal conductors. Two terminals support the charge current with the third one serving as the heat source. The properties of the mesoscopic junction determine how the injected heat current affects the charge and energy transport in the conductor. This way, the system can be designed to work as a non-local heat engine (if heat is converted into useful power). This effect has been recently observed in coupled quantum dot configurations (cf. Fig. 1) where the heat transfer is mediated by electron- electron interactions [1, 2, 3, 4]. The magnitude and sign of the generated current can be controled by external gate voltages. They also allow one to manipulate the heat flows in all-thermal operations such as a thermal transistor or a thermal diode [5]. The non-local coupling to the heat sources of a non-thermalized state in the quantum dot also leads to the unprecedented occurrence of a thermoelectric response with no net absorbed heat [6]. References [1] R.Sánchez, M.Büttiker, Optimal energy quanta to current conversion, Phys.Rev.B87,8,pp.075312(2011). [2] H.Thierschmannetal., Three-terminal energy harvester with coupled quantum dots, Nature Nanotech.10,pp.854-858(2015). [3] B.Rocheetal., Harvesting dissipated energy with a mesoscopic ratchet, Nature Comm.6,pp.6738(2015). [4] F. Hartmann et al., Voltage Fluctuation to Current Converter with Coulomb-Coupled Quantum Dots, Phys. Rev. Lett. 10, 14, pp. 146805 (2015). [5] H.Thierschmannetal., Thermoelectrics with Coulomb coupled quantum dots,arXiv:1603.08900(2016). [6] R.S.Whitney, R.Sánchez, F.Haupt, and J.Splettstoesser, Thermoelectricity without absorbing energy from the heat sources,Physia E 75, pp. 257-265 (2016).

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