Near–field force and energy exchange between two objects due to electrodynamic fluctuations give rise to dispersion forces such as Casimir and van der Waals forces, and thermal radiative transfer exceeding Plancks theory of blackbody radiation. The two phenomena dispersion forces and near–field enhancement of thermal radiation have common origins in the electromagnetic fluctuations. However, dispersion forces have contributions from quantum (zero–point) as well as thermal fluctuations whereas nearfield radiative transfer has contributions from thermal fluctuations alone. The forces are manifested through the Maxwell stress tensor of the electromagnetic field and radiative transfer through the Poynling vector. Both phenomena are elegantly described in terms of the Dyadic Greens function of the vector Helmholtz equation that governs the electromagnetic fields. In this talk, I will focus on the application of the Dyadic Greens function technique to near–field radiative transfer and dispersion forces. Despite the similarities, radiative transfer and forces have important differences that will be stressed on. I will end the talk with some open questions about the Dyadic Greens function formalism and its application to near–field radiative transfer.

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