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Thermal and vacuum friction acting on rotating particles

AuthorsManjavacas, Alejandro ; García de Abajo, Francisco Javier
Issue Date2010
PublisherAmerican Physical Society
CitationPHYSICAL REVIEW A 82: 063827 (2010)
AbstractWe study the stopping of spinning particles in vacuum. A torque is produced by fluctuations of the vacuum electromagnetic field and the particle polarization. Expressions for the frictional torque and the power radiated by the particle are obtained as a function of rotation velocity and the temperatures of the particle and the surrounding vacuum. We solve this problem following two different approaches: (i) a semiclassical calculation based upon the fluctuation-dissipation theorem (FDT), and (ii) a fully quantum-mechanical theory within the framework of quantum electrodynamics, assuming that the response of the particle is governed by bosonic excitations such as phonons and plasmons. Both calculations lead to identical final expressions, thus confirming the suitability of the FDT to deal with problems that are apparently out of equilibrium, and also providing comprehensive insight into the physical processes underlying thermal and vacuum friction. We adapt the quantum-mechanical theory to describe particles whose electromagnetic response is produced by fermionic excitations. Furthermore, we extend our FDT formalism to fully account for magnetic polarization, which dominates friction when the particle is a good conductor. Finally, we present numerically calculated torques and stopping times for the relevant cases of graphite and gold nanoparticles. © 2010 The American Physical Society.
Identifiersdoi: 10.1103/PhysRevA.82.063827
issn: 1050-2947
Appears in Collections:(CFMAC-IO) Artículos
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