Heat transport at nanoscales departs substantially from the well established classical laws governing the physical processes at continuum level. The Fourier Law of heat conduction cannot be applied at sub-continuum level due to its inability in modeling non-equilibrium energy transport. Therefore one must resort to a rigorous solution to the Boltzmann Transport Equation (BTE) in the realm of nanoscale transport regime. Some recent studies show that a relatively inexpensive and accurate way to predict the behavior of sub continuum energy transport in solids is via the discrete representation of the BTE referred to as the Lattice Boltzmann method (LBM). Although quite a few numerical simulations involving LBM have been exercised in the literature, there has been no clear demonstration of the accuracy of LBM over BTE; also there exists an ambiguity over employing the right lattice configurations describing phonon transport. In the present study, the Lattice Boltzmann Method has been implemented to study phonon transport in miniaturized devices. The initial part of the study focuses upon a detailed comparison of the LBM model with that of BTE for one dimensional heat transfer involving multiple length and time scales. The second objective of the present investigation is to evaluate different lattice structures such as D1Q2, D1Q3, D2Q5, D2Q8, D2Q9 etc. for 1-D and 2-D heat conduction. In order to reduce the modeling complexity, gray model assumption based on Debye approximation is adopted throughout the analysis. Results unveil that the accuracy of solution increases as the number of lattice directions taken into account are incremented from D2Q5 to D2Q9. A substantial increase in solution time with finer directional resolutions necessitates an optimum lattice. A novel lattice dimension ‘Mod D2Q5’ has been suggested and its performance is also compared with its compatriots. It is also demonstrated that the inclusion of the center point within a particular lattice structure can play a significant role in the prediction of thermal conductivity in the continuum level. However, as the size of the device comes down to allow high Knudsen numbers, in the limiting case of ballistic phonon transport, the choice of lattice seems to have negligible effect on thermal conductivity.

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