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C. Henkel, K. Joulain, J. P. Mulet, and J. J. Greffet
Coupled surface polaritons and the Casimir force
Phys. Rev. A 69 (2004) 023808 (7 pages)


    The Casimir force between metallic plates made of realistic materials is evaluated for distances in the nanometer range. A spectrum over real frequencies is introduced and shows narrow peaks due to surface resonances (plasmon polaritons or phonon polaritons) that are coupled across the vacuum gap. We demonstrate that the Casimir force originates from the attraction (repulsion) due to the corresponding symmetric (antisymmetric) eigenmodes, respectively. This picture is used to derive a simple analytical estimate of the Casimir force at short distances. We recover the result known for Drude metals without absorption and compute the correction for weakly absorbing materials.

[ physics/0308095 ]

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