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Van der Waals force?

  1. Oct 5, 2005 #1
    the retarded van der waals force is called the casimir force and the diference between them is that in the oscilations in vacumm between to perfect metallics plates if there is a van der waals force virtual photons reach form one plate to the other in casimir the life time of the photon is not enough to the photon to reach the other plate but ok i can understand it but someone could make it more clear .
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 5, 2005 #2
    The casimir effect is a fascinating prediction of quantum field theory.

    The best way to visualize is to picture the vacuum as consisting of 'waves' of energy of ALL possible frequency. When you put the plates in you RESTRICT the WAVES that can exist within the plates (all possible standing waves).

    The RESTRICTION on the waves on the INSIDE, means that there is 'less' waves on the inside than on the outside so in effect you have a pressure difference with less pressure on the interior than on the exterior so the plates are effectively pushed together.

  4. Oct 18, 2005 #3
    is there a casimir type effect between the interior and exterior of the electron cloud of a hydrogen atom?
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