Conformal Field Theory of Critical Casimir Interactions in 2D

G. Bimonte 1, T. Emig 2, M. Kardar 3

Europhysics Letters 104 (2013) 21001

Thermal fluctuations of a critical system induce long-ranged Casimir forces between objects that couple to the underlying field. For two dimensional (2D) conformal field theories (CFT) we derive an exact result for the Casimir interaction between two objects of arbitrary shape, in terms of (1) the free energy of a circular ring whose radii are determined by the mutual capacitance of two conductors with the objects' shape; and (2) a purely geometric energy that is proportional to conformal charge of the CFT, but otherwise super-universal in that it depends only on the shapes and is independent of boundary conditions and other details.

  • 1 : Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare, Sezione di Napoli (INFN, Sezione di Napoli)
    INFN
  • 2 : Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modèles Statistiques (LPTMS)
    CNRS : UMR8626 – Université Paris XI - Paris Sud
  • 3 : Department of Physics
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology