Laser Generated Heat Transfer

  • Kenneth R. Diller


The irradiation of tissue by laser light results in the absorption of energy. Since this is a fully dissipative process, the consequence is that the increment in energy is expressed entirely as a heat transfer absorbed by the tissue. In conjunction with this absorption, there will be an increase in the energy stored locally in the tissue as a function of the geometric pattern of absorption. Two primary mechanisms of energy storage are encountered most frequently during laser irradiation: sensible and latent. Sensible storage results in a change in temperature and latent in a change in phase. The two mechanisms may occur simultaneously or singularly, depending on the initial state of the tissue and the intensity of the irradiation. A local increase in the temperature will cause a diffusion of heat to surrounding areas that are cooler. Therefore, the analysis of heat transfer is an important and relevant component of understanding the process and consequences of laser irradiation of tissue. Phase change and temperature elevation are often a direct source of injury to tissue.


Heat Transfer Laser Irradiation Nusselt Number Thermal Radiation Free Convection 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biomedical EngineeringThe University of TexasAustinUSA

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