Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Casimir Effect from a Condensed Matter Perspective

I didn't have time yet to read this paper carefully, but I thought I should still pass it along in case people missed it. It is a take on the Casimir effect but from the point of view of condensed matter physics.

Abstract: The Casimir effect, a key observable realization of vacuum fluctuations, is usually taught in graduate courses on quantum field theory. The growing importance of Casimir forces in microelectromechanical systems motivates this subject as a topic for graduate many-body physics courses. To this end, we revisit the Casimir effect using methods common in condensed matter physics. We recover previously derived results and explore the implications of the analogies implicit in this treatment.

It has been accepted for publication in AJP.

The first part is quite useful, because it covers the basics of the Casimir effect. And for those of you who can't find a use for all those complex calculus stuff you learned in math classes, such as contour integral, well here's the proof of one of their use now.


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