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Title: Tailoring optical metamaterials to tune the atom-surface Casimir-Polder interaction
Authors: Chan, Eng Aik
Aljunid, Syed Abdullah
Adamo, Giorgio
Laliotis, Athanasios
Ducloy, Martial
Wilkowski, David
Keywords: Metamaterials
Casimir-Polder Interaction
Issue Date: 2018
Source: Chan, E. A., Aljunid, S. A., Adamo, G., Laliotis, A., Ducloy, M., & Wilkowski, D. (2018). Tailoring optical metamaterials to tune the atom-surface Casimir-Polder interaction. Science Advances, 4(2), eaao4223-.
Series/Report no.: Science Advances
Abstract: Metamaterials are fascinating tools that can structure not only surface plasmons and electromagnetic waves but also electromagnetic vacuum fluctuations. The possibility of shaping the quantum vacuum is a powerful concept that ultimately allows engineering the interaction between macroscopic surfaces and quantum emitters such as atoms, molecules, or quantum dots. The long-range atom-surface interaction, known as Casimir-Polder interaction, is of fundamental importance in quantum electrodynamics but also attracts a significant interest for platforms that interface atoms with nanophotonic devices. We perform a spectroscopic selective reflection measurement of the Casimir-Polder interaction between a Cs(6P3/2) atom and a nanostructured metallic planar metamaterial. We show that by engineering the near-field plasmonic resonances of the metamaterial, we can successfully tune the Casimir-Polder interaction, demonstrating both a strong enhancement and reduction with respect to its nonresonant value. We also show an enhancement of the atomic spontaneous emission rate due to its coupling with the evanescent modes of the nanostructure. Probing excited-state atoms next to nontrivial tailored surfaces is a rigorous test of quantum electrodynamics. Engineering Casimir-Polder interactions represents a significant step toward atom trapping in the extreme near field, possibly without the use of external fields.
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aao4223
Rights: © 2018 The Authors, some rights reserved; exclusive licensee American Association for the Advancement of Science. No claim to original U.S. Government Works. Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial License 4.0 (CC BY-NC). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial license, which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, so long as the resultant use is not for commercial advantage and provided the original work is properly cited.
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SPMS Journal Articles

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