Casimir effect as a sum over modes in dissipative systems

Francesco Intravaia, Ryan Behunin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


The aim of this paper is to show that within the open-system framework the sum-over-modes approach of Casimir leads to the Lifshitz formula for the Casimir free energy. A general result applicable to arbitrary geometries is obtained through the use of Ford, Lewis, and O'Connell's remarkable formula. Additionally, we address the possibility of obtaining the Casimir energy as a sum over complex "modes." We show in this case that the standard sum-over-modes formula must be suitably generalized to avert unphysical complex energies. Finally, we apply our results to several standard examples.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number062517
JournalPhysical Review A - Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 28 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


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