Aleksandr Volokitin. Quantum friction and graphene

Natural Sciences / Physics / Particle physics

Submitted on: Apr 12, 2012, 08:39:01

Description: Friction is usually a very complicated process. It appears in its most elementary form when two flat surfaces separated by vacuum gap are sliding relative to each other at zero Kelvin and the friction is generated by the relative movement of quantum fluctuations. For several decades physicists have been intrigued by the idea of quantum friction. It has recently been shown that two non-contacting bodies moving relative to each other experience a friction due to quantum fluctuations inside the bodies. However until recent time there was no experimental evidence for or against this effect, because the predicted friction forces are very small, and precise measurements of quantum forces are incredibly difficult with present technology. The existence of quantum friction is still debated even among theoreticians. However, situation drastically changed with the creation of new material - graphene. We recently proposed that quantum friction can be observed in experiments studying electrical transport phenomena in nonsuspended graphene on amorphous SiO_2 substrate.

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