Nonadditivity of optical and Casimir-Polder potentials

Fuchs, S., Bennett, R. , Krems, R. V. and Buhmann, S. Y. (2018) Nonadditivity of optical and Casimir-Polder potentials. Physical Review Letters, 121(8), 083603. (doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.121.083603)

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An atom irradiated by an off-resonant laser field near a surface is expected to experience the sum of two fundamental potentials, the optical potential of the laser field and the Casimir-Polder potential of the surface. Here, we report a new nonadditive potential, namely, the laser-induced Casimir-Polder potential, which arises from a correlated coupling of the atom with both the laser and the quantum vacuum. We apply this result to an experimentally realizable scenario of an atomic mirror with an evanescent laser beam leaking out of a surface. We show that the nonadditive term is significant for realistic experimental parameters, transforming potential barriers into potential wells, which can be used to trap atoms near surfaces.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Bennett, Dr Robert
Authors: Fuchs, S., Bennett, R., Krems, R. V., and Buhmann, S. Y.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Physical Review Letters
Publisher:American Physical Society
ISSN (Online):1079-7114
Published Online:22 August 2018

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