Rigorous approach to the comparison between experiment and theory in Casimir force measurements
Journal of Physics a-Mathematical and General 39,21 (2006) 6485-6493;
In most experiments on the Casimir force the comparison between measurement data and theory was done using the concept of the root-mean-square deviation, a procedure that has been criticized in the literature. Here we propose a special statistical analysis which should be performed separately for the experimental data and for the results of the theoretical computations. In so doing, the random, systematic and total experimental errors are found as functions of separation, taking into account the distribution laws for each error at 95% confidence. Independently, all theoretical errors are combined to obtain the total theoretical error at the same confidence. Finally, the confidence interval for the differences between theoretical and experimental values is obtained as a function of separation. This rigorous approach is applied to two recent experiments on the Casimir effect.
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