Repulsive Casimir and CasimirPolder forces
Abstract
Casimir and CasimirPolder repulsions have been known for more than 50 years. The general ‘Lifshitz’ configuration of parallel semiinfinite dielectric slabs permits repulsion if they are separated by a dielectric fluid that has a value of permittivity that is intermediate between those of the dielectric slabs. This was indirectly confirmed in the 1970s, and more directly by Capasso’s group recently. It has also been known for many years that electrically and magnetically polarizable bodies can experience a repulsive quantum vacuum force. More amenable to practical application are situations where repulsion could be achieved between ordinary conducting and dielectric bodies in vacuum. The status of the field of Casimir repulsion with emphasis on some recent developments will be surveyed. Here, stress will be placed on analytic developments, especially on CasimirPolder (CP) interactions between anisotropically polarizable atoms, and CP interactions between anisotropic atoms and bodies that also exhibit anisotropy, either because of anisotropic constituents, or because of geometry. Repulsion occurs for wedgeshaped and cylindrical conductors, provided the geometry is sufficiently asymmetric, that is, either the wedge is sufficiently sharp or the atom is sufficiently far from the cylinder.
This article is part of a special issue of Journal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical in honour of Stuart Dowker’s 75th birthday devoted to ‘Applications of zeta functions and other spectral functions in mathematics and physics’.
 Publication:

Journal of Physics A Mathematical General
 Pub Date:
 September 2012
 DOI:
 10.1088/17518113/45/37/374006
 arXiv:
 arXiv:1202.6415
 Bibcode:
 2012JPhA...45K4006M
 Keywords:

 High Energy Physics  Theory;
 Quantum Physics
 EPrint:
 24 pages, 14 figures, contribution to the special issue of J. Phys. A honoring Stuart Dowker. This revision corrects typos and adds additional references and discussion