Research Papers

The Definition of Point Sources: Point Charge, Mass Point and Heat Point Source—A Generalized Sternberg Definition of Concentrated Forces

[+] Author and Article Information
Haijian Chu

Department of Mechanics,
College of Sciences,
Shanghai University,
Shanghai 200444, China
e-mail: hjchu01@gmail.com

Minzhong Wang

Department of Mechanics and
Aerospace Engineering,
Peking University,
Beijing 100871, China

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received January 26, 2013; final manuscript received March 21, 2013; accepted manuscript posted March 21, 2013; published online September 16, 2013. Editor: Yonggang Huang.

J. Appl. Mech 81(1), 011010 (Sep 16, 2013) (3 pages) Paper No: JAM-13-1050; doi: 10.1115/1.4024075 History: Received January 26, 2013; Accepted March 21, 2013; Revised March 21, 2013

By considering the concept of point sources, such as point charge, mass point, and heat point source, we give a unified definition of these point sources with three conditions to judge what kind of distributed source in a small region can be taken as a point source by applying Sternberg's concept on concentrated forces. Comparing it with the traditional qualitative understanding of this concept, the definition gives a new condition with a very simple form. Counter-examples demonstrate that the traditional understanding of the point source is not sufficient and the new requirement should not be omitted.

Copyright © 2014 by ASME
Topics: Heat
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Good, R. H., 1999, Classical Electromagnetism, Brooks/Cole, New York.
Choudhury, M. H., 1989, Electromagnetism, Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ.
Özisik, M. N., 1977, Basic Heat Transfer, McGraw-Hill, New York.
Lykotrafitis, G., and Georgiadis, H. G., 2003, “The Three-Dimensional Steady-State Thermo-Elastodynamic Problem of Moving Sources Over a Half Space,” Int. J. Solids Struct., 40, pp. 899–940. [CrossRef]
Chipot, C., Áangyán, J. G., and Millot, C., 1998, “Statistical Analysis of Distributed Multipoles Derived From Molecular Electrostatic Potentials,” Mol. Phys., 94, pp. 881–895. [CrossRef]
Sternberg, E., and Rosenthai, F., 1952, “The Elastic Sphere under Concentrated Loads,” ASME J. Appl. Mech., 19, pp. 413–421.
Sternberg, E., and Eubanks, R. A., 1955, “On the Concept of Concentrated Loads and an Extension of Uniqueness Theorem in the Linear Theory of Elasticity,” J. Rat. Mech. Anal., 4, pp. 135–168.
Turteltaub, M. J., and Sternberg, E., 1968, “On Concentrated Loads and Green's Functions in Elastostatics,” Arch. Rat. Mech. Anal., 29, pp. 193–240. [CrossRef]
Chu, H. J., and Wang, M. Z., 2005, “A Note on the Limit Definition of Concentrated Loads,” ASME J. Appl. Mech., 72, pp. 418–421. [CrossRef]
Dugdale, D., 1993, Essentials of Electromagnetism, MacMillan, New York.


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Illustration of the geometry of a distributed source




Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In