Interplay of roughness/modulation and curvature for surface interactions at proximity
1 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Physics - Cambridge, MA 02139, USA
2 Dipartimento di Scienze Fisiche, Università di Napoli Federico II, Complesso Universitario MSA Via Cintia, I-80126 Napoli, Italy and INFN Sezione di Napoli - I-80126 Napoli, Italy
Received: 30 September 2013
Accepted: 19 November 2013
Employing the proximity approximation, we show that roughness or surface modulations change the distance dependence of (power-law) interactions between curved objects at proximity. The modified scaling law is simply related to the order of the first non-vanishing coefficient of the Taylor expansion of the distribution of separations between the surfaces. The latter can in principle be estimated by scanning measurements, or computed for well characterized modulations, and then used to predict short-distance scaling behavior in disparate experiments. For example, we predict that the radiative heat transfer between a rough sphere and a plate approaches a constant with decreasing separation. Similar saturation is expected for the Casimir force between dielectric or metallic surfaces with appropriate modulations over distinct length scales.
PACS: 12.20.-m – Quantum electrodynamics / 44.40.+a – Thermal radiation / 68.35.Ct – Interface structure and roughness
© EPLA, 2013