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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.

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Topics: Heat
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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Illustration of the geometry of a distributed source

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