Contemporary applications and research of radiative properties

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Research on the radiative properties of materials and how they can be modified, tailored for a specific application, or measured for use in new applications is a continuing research field.

At the macroscopic level, there is much interest in biomedical applications such as skin absorption, thermal imaging for cancer detection, monitoring of burn severity by observing changes in tissue reflectivity and others. Highly coupled problems involving radiation include spacecraft reentry and ablation determination; radiation from incandescent solid and porous surfaces in combustion systems; use of "ground truth" known properties to calibrate infrared satellite sensors used for gathering temperature data; the use of high-energy radiation to preheat materials during machining, particularly for ceramics; and the continuing need to gather and predict radiative properties in the design and analysis of infrared ovens, dryers, utility boilers, chemical processing equipment, and for high temperature manufacturing processes such as cutting, grinding, turning, joining and others.

At the micro- and nanoscale level, research is ongoing in the use of near-field radiation phenomena in measuring various properties through the use of near-field radiative energy interactions, sub-wavelength microscopy, and micro-manufacturing of surface features using near-field energy enhancement to tailor selective directional and spectral radiative properties


Faghri, A., Zhang, Y., and Howell, J. R., 2010, Advanced Heat and Mass Transfer, Global Digital Press, Columbia, MO.

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