The Wightman function and the vacuum expectation values of the field squared and of the energy-momentum tensor are obtained, for a massive scalar field with an arbitrary curvature coupling parameter, in the region between two infinite parallel plates, on the background of de Sitter spacetime. The field is prepared in the Bunch-Davies vacuum state and is constrained to satisfy Robin boundary conditions on the plates. For the calculation, a mode-summation method is used, supplemented with a variant of the generalized Abel-Plana formula. This allows one to explicitly extract the contributions to the expectation values, which come from each single boundary, and to expand the second-plate-induced part in terms of exponentially convergent integrals. Several limiting cases of interest are then studied. Moreover, the Casimir forces acting on the plates are evaluated, and it is shown that the curvature of the background spacetime decisively influences the behavior of these forces at separations larger than the curvature scale of de Sitter spacetime. In terms of the curvature coupling parameter and the mass of the field, two very different regimes are realized, which exhibit monotonic and oscillatory behavior of the vacuum expectation values, respectively. The decay of the Casimir force at large plate separation is shown to be power law (monotonic or oscillating), with independence of the value of the field mass. © 2010 The American Physical Society.
|Journal||Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jun 2010|