Optical-approximation analysis of sidewall-spacing effects on the force between two squares with parallel sidewalls

Saad Zaheer, Alejandro W. Rodriguez, Steven G. Johnson, Robert L. Jaffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Using the ray-optics approximation, we analyze the Casimir force in a two-dimensional domain formed by two metallic blocks adjacent to parallel metallic sidewalls, which are separated from the blocks by a finite distance h. For h>0, the ray-optics approach is not exact because diffraction effects are neglected. Nevertheless, we show that ray optics is able to qualitatively reproduce a surprising effect recently identified in an exact numerical calculation: the force between the blocks varies nonmonotonically with h. In this sense, the ray-optics approach captures an essential part of the physics of multibody interactions in this system, unlike simpler pairwise-interaction approximations such as proximity force approximations (PFA). Furthermore, by comparison to the exact numerical results, we are able to quantify the impact of diffraction on Casimir forces in this geometry.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number063816
JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
Volume76
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 20 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Optical-approximation analysis of sidewall-spacing effects on the force between two squares with parallel sidewalls'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this