Repulsive Casimir and van der Waals forces: from measurements to future technologies

Repulsive Casimir and van der Waals forces: from measurements to future technologies

Year:2010
Author(s):J. N. Munday and Federico Capasso
Citation(s):Inter. J. of Mod. Phys. A 25, 2252 (2010)

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Abstract: By engineering the boundary conditions of electromagnetic fields between material interfaces, one can dramatically change the Casimir-Lifshitz force between surfaces as a result of the modified zero-point energy density of the system. Repulsive interactions between macroscopic bodies occur when their dielectric responses obey a particular inequality, as pointed out by Dzyaloshinskii, Lifshitz, and Pitaevskii. We discuss experimental verification of this behavior as well as a description of how this can be used to develop a scheme for quantum levitation. Based on these concepts, we discuss the possible development of a new class of devices based on ultra-low static friction and the ability to sort objects based on their dielectric functions.