Vacuum Polarization Of Conduction Electron Cloud

equilibrium with the zero-point fluctuations. If we postulate there exist in the environment vacuum polarization displacement currents that can follow a particle's lines of polarization, then these currents would converge onto an ion but not converge onto a smeared electron cloud. Any environmental vacuum polarization displacement current would pass right through the smeared, fluctuating electron cloud. Senitzky shows that the "Vacuum field plays no [net] role when the atomic system is an harmonic oscillator"22 and that "linear oscillators such as antennas cannot in principle experience the effect of the vacuum field."22 Also, Sciama shows that "for an [electron-based] detector at rest, the excitations caused by these zero-point fluctuations are precisely cancelled by its spontaneous emission rate."12 Thus, the smeared electron cloud maintains thermodynamic equilibrium with the vacuum and could not absorb zero-point vacuum polarization surges.

However, the concentrated mass of the nucleus or heavy ion could interact with vacuum polarization modes, for its own vacuum polarized field convergently channels the longitudinal oscillations directly to the particle, altering its momentum. Note the two-way effect: the heavy particle can induce a spherically symmetric and convergent vacuum polarization around itself. As a transmitter, this field then launches vacuum polarization displacement currents whenever the particle moves or oscillates; as a receiver this field tends to channel those oscillations convergentiy onto the spherical particle, altering its motion. Because the heavy ion can maintain spherically convergent, stable lines of polarization, it becomes a transducer for transmitting and detecting longitudinal, vacuum polarization propagation modes that a conduction electron could not respond to and therefore could not detect.

Vacuum polarization effects can become powerfully synergistic when more than one ion or nucleus is involved. Roesel28describes the vacuum polarization potential for two extended charge distributions, and Soff29 describes the

"shake-off of the vacuum polarization cloud" in heavy ion collisions as a "collective type of electron-positron creation due to coherent action "29 Rauscher50 was perhaps the first to suggest that coherent, vacuum quantum electrodynamic effects could take place in a plasma by demonstrating that vacuum polarization makes a significant contribution to the plasma's effective permittivity and conductivity. The nonlinear vacuum polarization description for a conglomerate of oscillating heavy ions would be quite complex and not readily solvable by the standard renormalization techniques. Modeling on a magnetohydrodynamic level would be more appropriate. In plasma analysis, the oscillations in polarization modulate the effective permittivity.50 If similar modeling is applied to the vacuum's zero-point activity, the macroscopic, longitudinal, vacuum polarization oscillations could be described as "permittivity waves." A plasma model for the zero-point activity may yield a reasonable approximation, since Melrose52 shows that the "vacuum polarization tensor in the presence of strong static homogeneous magnetic fields...reduces to forms equivalent to the magneto-acoustic and shear Alfven modes in a plasma."52 Such modeling could predict longitudinal propagation modes. This could be reasonable, since Cover51 demonstrates that vacuum polarization can give rise to longitudinal photon-like resonances. In this model, the highly nonlinear description of a group of ions interacting

Figure 3

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