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Accueil du site > Publications > Publications 2010 > Non-monotoic fluctuation-induced interactions between dielectric slabs carrying charge disorder

Non-monotoic fluctuation-induced interactions between dielectric slabs carrying charge disorder

Jalal Sarabadani, Ali Naji, David S. Dean, Ron R. Horgan, Rudolf Podgornik

par David Dean - 17 décembre 2010

We investigate the effect of monopolar charge disorder on the classical fluctuation-induced interactions between randomly charged net-neutral dielectric slabs and discuss various generalizations of recent results (A. Naji et al., Phys. Rev. Lett. 104, 060601 (2010)) to highly inhomogeneous dielectric systems with and without statistical disorder correlations. We shall focus on the specific case of two generally dissimilar plane-parallel slabs, which interact across vacuum or an arbitrary intervening dielectric medium. Monopolar charge disorder is considered to be present on the bounding surfaces and/or in the bulk of the slabs, may be in general quenched or annealed and may possess a finite lateral correlation length reflecting possible `patchiness’ of the random charge distribution. In the case of quenched disorder, the bulk disorder is shown to give rise to an additive long-range contribution to the total force, which decays as the inverse distance between the slabs and may be attractive or repulsive depending on the dielectric constants of the slabs. We show that in the case of two dissimilar slabs the net effect due to the interplay between the disorder-induced and the pure van der Waals interactions can lead to a variety of unusual non-monotonic interaction profiles between the dielectric slabs. In particular, when the intervening medium has a larger dielectric constant than the two slabs, we find that the net interaction can become repulsive and exhibit a potential barrier, while the underlying van der Waals force is attractive. On the contrary, when the intervening medium has a dielectric constant in between that of the two slabs, the net interaction can become attractive and exhibit a free energy minimum, while the pure van der Waals force is repulsive. Therefore, the charge disorder, if present, can drastically alter the effective interaction between net-neutral objects.