Volume 117, Number 6, March 2017
|Number of page(s)||6|
|Section||Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics|
|Published online||17 May 2017|
Casimir-Polder force fluctuations as spatial probes of dissipation in metals
Laboratoire Kastler Brossel, UPMC-Sorbonne Universités, CNRS, ENS-PSL Research University, Collège de France 4 Place Jussieu, 75005 Paris, France
Received: 8 March 2017
Accepted: 26 April 2017
We study the spatial fluctuations of the Casimir-Polder force experienced by an atom or a small sphere moved above a metallic plate at fixed separation distance. We demonstrate that unlike the mean force, the magnitude of these fluctuations crucially relies on the relaxation of conduction electron in the metallic bulk, and even achieves values that differ by orders of magnitude depending on the amount of dissipation. We also discover that fluctuations suffer a spectacular decrease at large distances in the case of nonzero temperature.
PACS: 34.35.+a – Interactions of atoms and molecules with surfaces / 42.50.Ct – Quantum description of interaction of light and matter; related experiments / 42.25.Dd – Wave propagation in random media
© EPLA, 2017
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