Orientation dependence of Casimir forces

T. Emig 1, 2, N. Graham 3, R. L. Jaffe 4, M. Kardar 5

Physical Review A: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics 79 (2008) 054901

The Casimir interaction between two objects, or between an object and a plane, depends on their relative orientations. We make these angular dependences explicit by considering prolate or oblate spheroids. The variation with orientation is calculated exactly at asymptotically large distances for the electromagnetic field, and at arbitrary separations for a scalar field. For a spheroid in front of a mirror, the leading term is orientation independent, and we find the optimal orientation from computations at higher order.

  • 1. Institut für Theoretische Physik,
    Universität zu Köln
  • 2. Laboratoire de Physique Théorique et Modèles Statistiques (LPTMS),
    CNRS : UMR8626 – Université Paris XI - Paris Sud
  • 3. Middlebury College,
    Middlebury Colleg
  • 4. Department of Physics, Center for Theoretical Physics,
    Massachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
  • 5. Department of Physics,
    Massachusetts Institute of Technology