Mackrory, J. B.,Bhattacharya, T.,Steck, D. A.
We present a worldline method for the calculation of Casimir energies for scalar fields coupled to magnetodielectricmedia. The scalar model we consider may be applied in arbitrary geometries, and it corresponds exactly to one polarization of the electromagnetic field in planar layered media. Starting from the field theory for electromagnetism, we work with the two decoupled polarizations in planar media and develop worldline path integrals, which represent the two polarizations separately, for computing both Casimir and Casimir-Polder potentials. We then show analytically that the path integrals for the transverse-electric polarization coupled to a dielectricmedium converge to the proper solutions in certain special cases, including the Casimir-Polder potential of an atom near a planar interface, and the Casimir energy due to two planar interfaces. We also evaluate the path integrals numerically viaMonte Carlo path-averaging for these cases, studying the convergence and performance of the resulting computational techniques. While these scalar methods are only exact in particular geometries, they may serve as an approximation for Casimir energies for the vector electromagnetic field in other geometries.