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The South American Monsoon System (SAMS) is now clearly recognized as one of the major features of the tropical circulation. The South Atlantic Convergence Zone (SACZ) and the Amazon Heat Source, are major features of the SAMS and constitute important heat sources with regional and remote influences, with significant diurnal, synoptic, intraseasonal, decadal or multi-decadal variability. Theoretical results on the role of heat sources in tropical South America will be reviewed, including the role of vertical shear, diurnal variation, determination of the subsidence areas induced by the Amazon and SACZ heat sources, remote influences of the SAMS heat sources and energy transfer from the diurnal to very long time scales based on multiscaling models.