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Self-force on a charged particle in an external scalar field

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

E-pub ahead of print
Article number115007
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>24/11/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>New Journal of Physics
Publication StatusE-pub ahead of print
Early online date24/11/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


A charged particle subject to strong external forces will accelerate, and so radiate energy, inducing a self-force. This phenomenon remains contentious, but advances in laser technology mean we will soon encounter regimes where a more complete understanding is essential. The terms "self-force" and "radiation reaction" are often used synonymously, but reflect different aspects of the recoil force. For a particle accelerating in an electromagnetic field, radiation reaction is usually the dominant self-force, but in a scalar field this is not the case, and the total effect of the self-force can be anti-frictional. Aspects of this self-force can be recast in terms of spacetime geometry, and this interpretation illuminates the long-standing enigma of a particle radiating while experiencing no self-force.