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Author Ford, L. H. ♦ Svaiter, N. F.
Source arXiv.org
Content type Text
File Format PDF
Date of Submission 2008-09-10
Language English
Subject Domain (in DDC) Computer science, information & general works ♦ Natural sciences & mathematics ♦ Physics
Subject Keyword Quantum Physics ♦ Condensed Matter - Other Condensed Matter ♦ physics:cond-mat ♦ physics:quant-ph
Abstract We discuss the density fluctuations of a fluid due to zero point motion. These can be regarded as density fluctuations in the phonon vacuum state. We assume a linear dispersion relation with a fixed speed of sound and calculate the density correlation function. We note that this function has the same form as the correlation function for the time derivative of a relativistic massless scalar field, but with the speed of light replaced by the speed of sound. As a result, the study of density fluctuations in a fluid can be a useful analog model for better understanding fluctuations in relativistic quantum field theory. We next calculate the differential cross section for light scattering by the zero point density fluctuations, and find a result proportional to the fifth power of the light frequency. This can be understood as the product of fourth power dependence of the usual Rayleigh cross section with the linear frequency dependence of the spectrum of zero point density fluctuations. We give some estimates of the relative magnitude of this effect compared to the scattering by thermal density fluctuations, and find that it can be of order 0.5% for water at room temperature and optical frequencies. This relative magnitude is proportional to frequency and inversely proportional to temperature. Although the scattering by zero point density fluctuation is small, it may be observable.
Description Reference: Phys.Rev.Lett.102:030602,2009
Educational Use Research
Learning Resource Type Article
Page Count 7


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