We investigate Brownian motions of a particle coupled to vacuum fluctuations of a quantum field. The Unruh effect predicts that an observer in an accelerated motion sees the Minkowski vacuum as thermally excited. This addresses the problem of whether or not a thermal property appears in a perturbative random motion of a particle in an accelerated motion due to the coupling. We revisit this problem by solving the equation of motion of a particle coupled to vacuum fluctuations including the radiation reaction force. We compute a Fourier integral for the variance of the random velocity in a rigorous manner. Similarly, we consider a particle coupled to vacuum fluctuations in de Sitter spacetime motivated by the argument that an observer in de Sitter spacetime sees the Bunch-Davies vacuum as a thermally excited state with the Gibbons-Hawking temperature. Our investigation clarifies the condition that the energy equipartition relation arises in the Brownian motions of a particle.
|Journal||Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 24 2014|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)