Take the 2-minute tour ×
Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is there a list of basic quantum variables/attributes that all quantum particles have?

Ex. An electron has charge, position, speed, momentum, etc. Is there a complete list of these variables?

I would figure not all quantum particles share the same set of variables? A photon has position and an electron has position but a photon does not have a charge and an electron does, though I guess it is said a photon has neutral charge.

share|improve this question
    
The attributes of elementary particles are described in the standard model article, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standard_Model. These particles can be characterized by spacetime variables (x,y,z,t) momentum and energy variables (p_x,p_y,p_z,E) plus variables that are derived from these. –  anna v May 31 '13 at 14:06
    
Momentum is mass * velocity right? So momentum is derived from (x,y,z,t). What about mass? What about charge? –  BumSkeeter May 31 '13 at 14:36
    
the quantum numbers listed in the table of the link are like axioms, attributes describing the particles. These are mass, charge, spin, plus color, lepton number , baryon number. These are quantum numbers extracted from experimental data, i.e. that is the way nature is. –  anna v May 31 '13 at 15:04
    
So then what is the decisive list? (mass, charge, spin, plus color, lepton number , baryon number, x, y, z, t) by "plus color" do you just mean "color", and that relates to QCD? –  BumSkeeter May 31 '13 at 15:42
    
yes , color is the three colors of QCD, it is a quantum number (badly named ). I think also , for Lorenz invariance (p_x,p_y,p_z,E) are independent variables. from these two sets of variables various other useful ones can be defined. –  anna v May 31 '13 at 16:53
show 1 more comment

1 Answer 1

I will collate my comments here:

The Standard Model of particle physics encapsulates almost all the experimental evidence to date about particles and their interactions. It consists of two branches, the particles and their observed symmetries under interactions and also the quantum mechanical mathematical tools that give the interaction probabilities for desired reactions between them.

standard model

The Standard Model of elementary particles, with the three generations of matter, gauge bosons in the fourth column and the Higgs boson in the fifth.

We see from the list of elementary particles that masses, spins, charges are intrinsic attributes. Among the charges one should include the three QCD colors and also lepton number and baryon number.

The symmetries that have been established experimentally led to the specific mathematical model.

Mathematical models need variables, these are the four space time dimensions (x,y,z,t) and the energy momentum vector (p_x,p_y,p_z,E) which will describe the kinematics of interacting particles. Based on these variables Quantum mechanical equations represent the dynamics of interacting elementary particles .

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.