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The Lennard-Jones potential arises from the mutual polarisation of the two molecules. It is present for all molecules however it is a weak interaction and easily overwhelmed by electromagnetic forces. For example two ions would interact via their electric fields much more strongly than via the LJ mechanism and we'd get a $1/r^2$ force ($1/r$ potential). ...


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If we identify a force as a scattering process, i.e. with a mediator of some interactions, then this need not be a vector boson of course. One can speak of "Higgs" force for instance if the process under consideration is mediated by the the Higgs (which is a scalar). There are also numerous cases where the interaction is mediated by a fermion. Therefore, ...



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