A mathematical construct used to study the effect of applying two operators in succession.

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1answer
40 views

Meaning of expectation value of product of non-commuting operators

Let $\hat{A}$ and $\hat{B}$ be Hermitian observables with spectra labeled by $a$ and $b$. Then we can write \begin{equation} \hat{A} = \sum_a a\, \hat{P}_a \end{equation} \begin{equation} \hat{B} = ...
2
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5answers
226 views

Eigenspaces of angular momentum operator and its square (Casimir operator)

The casimir operator $\textbf{L}^2$ commutates with the elements $L_i$ of the angular momentum operator $\textbf{L}$: $$ [\textbf{L}^2, L_i] = 0. $$ However, the $L_i$ do not commutate among ...
0
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2answers
46 views

Time-ordering and Dyson series

In Dyson series we use a time-ordered exponential by arguing that a Hamiltonian at two different instants of time does not commute. Why is it that so? Can anyone explain with example why should the ...
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2answers
89 views

$[A_1, H] =[A_2, H] = 0$ but $[A_1, A_2] \neq 0$?

I am having a difficult time understanding this problem. Suppose $[A_1, A_2] \ne 0,$ $[A_1, H] = 0,$ $[A_2, H] = 0.$ Show that the energy eigenstates of $H$ are in general ...
0
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1answer
72 views

Commutation relations in second quantization

I know that for operators $a(\chi_1), a(\chi_2)$ of the same type (fermionic or bosonic) $$ [a(\chi_1), a(\chi_2)]_{-\xi} = [a^\dagger (\chi_1), a^\dagger (\chi_2)]_{-\xi} = 0 \tag{1}$$ where $$\xi ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

Prove: $A$ and $B$ commute, therefore functions $f(A)$ and $g(B)$ will always commute with one another [closed]

How do I / can I actually prove the relationship $[a,b]=0 \Rightarrow [f(a),g(b)]=0$ for all functions $f,g$. I'm asking because the following sentence in the solution to my quantum mechanics ...
2
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1answer
56 views

Minus sign in the time ordering operator

The time ordering operator is usually defined as $$\mathcal{T} \left\{A(\tau) B(\tau')\right\} := \begin{cases} A(\tau) B(\tau') & \text{if } \tau > \tau', \\ \pm B(\tau')A(\tau) & \text{if ...
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1answer
63 views

Angular Momentum Operators - Commutation Relations

I was going over past PGRE exam questions, and came across this one. The components for the angular momentum operator $\mathbf{L}=(L_x,L_y,L_z)$ satisfy the following commutation relations. ...
5
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2answers
161 views

Commutation relations in QFT and the principle of locality

My question is, given two space-time points $x^{\mu}$ and $y^{\mu}$, if the events that occur at these points are simultaneous, i.e. $x^{0}=y^{0}$, are the two events necessarily space-like separated? ...
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0answers
38 views

The relation between commutation and quanta

This question discusses discretization in some sense, and this question talks about how quantization and Hilbert Spaces are related (the answer seems to to be not at all), but what I'm curious about ...
1
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1answer
150 views

How is quantization related to commutation? [duplicate]

How are commutation (of observables) and quantization related? Reading about the Stone-Von Neumann Theorem, it seems that commutativity is the classical limit of quantum mechanics, and hence ...
2
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1answer
111 views

What is this nested bracket notation?

The following is an excerpt from K. Varga's paper, Precise solution of few-body problems with stochastic variational method on correlated Gaussian basis: ...The function $θ_{LM_L}(\mathbf{x})$ in ...
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1answer
47 views

Commutators and Operators [closed]

Is commutator of two operators an operator? I searched google but still got no success! I'm very curious to know the answer to this!
2
votes
2answers
86 views

Commuting observables and CSCO's

I've been looking at some basic quantum mechanics all day in an attempt to better my understanding of the subject. While going over the proof that commuting operators are compatible, I started getting ...
0
votes
2answers
99 views

Would $[\hat{Q},\hat{H}]$ correspond to an observable? [closed]

Would $[\hat{Q},\hat{H}]$ correspond to an observable? Where $\hat{Q}$ is an observable and $\hat{H}$ is the Hamiltonian. Surely that would just mean that $[\hat{Q},\hat{H}]$ would commute i.e. = 0?: ...
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2answers
152 views

$\hat{L}_{x}$ and $\hat{L}_{y}$ do not commute… or do they?

So $\hat{L}_{x}$ and $\hat{L}_{y}$ do not commute: $ [ \hat{L_{x}}, \hat{L_{y}}] = i\hbar \hat{L_{z}}$ But, what if we perform this operation on a state such that: $\hat{L_{z}} \phi_{l, m_{l}} = ...
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1answer
92 views

How to derive Uncertainty Principle relation?

How to derive Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle relation?
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0answers
43 views

commutation relation of angular momentum operator in non cartesian coordinates

The angular momentum operator $J$ in quantum mechanics with the commutation relation \begin{equation*} [J_i,J_j]=i\hbar\epsilon_{ijk}J_k \end{equation*} has the structure of a Lie-algebra. It is ...
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2answers
65 views

Derivatives of Fields in E&M

In QED the field strength tensor $F_{\mu\nu}$ is given by the commutator of the covariant derivatives $$D_\mu=\partial_\mu-ieA_\mu$$ where $A_\mu$ is the gauge field. Explicitly we have ...
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0answers
46 views

When trying to see what symmetries an operator generates, how do you “decide” what coordinate to apply it to?

Suppose I have $\hat{O}_{1}=-i\hbar\partial_{x}$ then \begin{eqnarray} e^{-i\gamma\hat{O}_{1}/\hbar}x\,e^{i\gamma\hat{O}_{1}/\hbar}=x+\gamma \end{eqnarray} and \begin{eqnarray} ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Transition from 4-potential to E and B [closed]

In my lecture notes there is a step that i cannot follow: $$\frac{i}{2}[\gamma^{\mu},\gamma^{\nu}] (\partial_{\mu}A_{\nu}-\partial_{\nu}A_{\mu})=: \sigma^{\mu\nu}F_{\mu\nu}=i\vec{\alpha} ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Derivation of Pauli Hamiltonian

In my lecture notes there is a step that i cannot follow: $$\frac{i}{2}\epsilon_{ijk}\sigma_k [\pi_i,\pi_j] = -e\epsilon_{ijk}\partial_iA_j\sigma_k$$ with $\vec{\pi}=\vec{p}-e\vec{A}(x)$ When I ...
2
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2answers
148 views

What is the meaning of commuting Hamiltonians?

I have two quantum mechanical Hamiltonians such that \begin{equation} [\hat{H}_1,\hat{H}_2] = 0, \end{equation} where $\hat{H}_1$ and $\hat{H}_2$ act on the same set of states. What is there to ...
2
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2answers
57 views

What does a left-right arrow in a tensor formula mean?

I need help with some some notation I've not seen before. Is using the left-right arrow in this formula $$[P^μ,M^{ρσ}]=i\hbar(g^{\mu\sigma}P^\rho-(\rho\leftrightarrow\sigma))$$ equivalent to writing ...
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1answer
100 views

Commutator and Hamiltonian [closed]

Assume that $[\hat{A},\hat{H}]_-=0$ and $[\hat{B},\hat{H}]_-=0$ but we know that $[\hat{A},\hat{B}]_-\neq 0$. Then there exists degenerate stationary states of $H$. How to prove it?
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1answer
55 views

Why is it “disconcerting” if the components of an operator do not commute?

A symmetrized operator is given by $$\hat{R}=\frac{1}{2\hat{H}}\hat{N}+\hat{N}\frac{1}{2\hat{H}}.$$ With $\hat{H}$ the Hamiltonian and $\hat{N}$ the first moment of energy. The defined $\hat{R}$ is ...
2
votes
1answer
87 views

Commutator of fermionic operators

The fermionic creation/annihilation operators are defined by the anti-commutation relations: $$ \{a_k^{\dagger},a_q^{\dagger}\} = 0 = \{a_k,a_q \} $$ $$ \{a_k^{\dagger},a_q\} = \delta_{kq} \, .$$ I ...
6
votes
3answers
685 views

Does it mean anything if the commutator of an operator with the Hamiltonian is equal to the Hamiltonian?

Question says it all, really. I have $[\hat{H},\hat{O}]=-2i\hbar\hat{H}$. Does this mean that the operator $\hat{O}$ (an observable) is special in some way?
3
votes
1answer
128 views

Spin operator: tricky proof using gamma matrices

I have not dealt with the gamma matrices extensively so I am having a bit of trouble here. Basically I want to show that the spin operator defined by $$ \mathbf{\hat{S}} = \frac{1}{2}\gamma^5 ...
1
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1answer
82 views

Translation Operators

Show that if the wave function $\langle x|\psi\rangle$ is modified by a position-dependent phase $\langle x|\psi\rangle \to e^{\frac{ip_ox}{\hbar}}\langle x|\psi\rangle$ then $\langle x\rangle ...
0
votes
3answers
125 views

How do I prove that the del squared operator commutes with the angular momentum operator? [closed]

I need to prove in Cartesian coordinates that $[\nabla^{2},\hat{L_{z}}]= 0$ I know that the angular momentum operator is defined as: $\hat{L_{z}}=x\hat{p_{y}}-y\hat{p_{x}}$ And the del squared is ...
1
vote
1answer
67 views

Anticommutator difference [closed]

What is the value of this difference of anticommutators $$\{x^2,p^2\}-(\{x,p\}^2)/2$$ if the commutator $$[x,p]=i\hbar ~?$$ I have tried and obtained a value $$-3\hbar^2/2 - 2i\hbar px.$$ But ...
2
votes
0answers
83 views

Prove that $e^{\frac{i\lambda}{\hbar} S_x}S_ze^{-\frac{i\lambda}{\hbar}S_x}=S_z\cos(\lambda)+S_y\sin(\lambda)$ [closed]

Prove using Hadamard's lemma that $$e^{\frac{i\lambda}{\hbar} S_x}S_ze^{-\frac{i\lambda}{\hbar}S_x}=S_z\cos(\lambda)+S_y\sin(\lambda) $$ where $\lambda$ is a complex number. I get: ...
1
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0answers
75 views

Simultaneous eigenket

J. J. Sakurai states in his "Modern Quantum Mechanics", this fact as a theorem ($\pi$ is the parity operator): Suppose $$[H,\pi]=0$$ and $| n>$ is a nondegenerate eigenket of $H$ with ...
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0answers
41 views

Do the norms of the total and the orbital angular momentums commute? If yes, why is there a problem with 2p_{1/2}?

Question: For $\vec L$ the orbital angular momentum of an electron, $\bar S$ its spin, and $\vec J:=\vec L+\vec S$ the sum, do $\vec J^2$ and $\vec L^2$ commute? I assume it does: $[\vec J^2,\vec ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

Commutator between square position and square momentum [duplicate]

I need (as a part of one exercise) to find commutator between $\hat{x}^2$ and $\hat{p}^2$ and my derivation goes as follows: $$[\hat{x}^2,\hat{p}^2]\psi = [\hat{x}^2\hat{p}^2 - ...
0
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2answers
44 views

RH side of the Uncertainty principle: when is it a number and when an expectation value?

The uncertainty principle between the position $x$ and the momentum $p$ is given by: $$ \sigma_x \sigma_p \geq \hbar/2,$$ whereas for the $x$ and $y$ components of the angular momentum is given by: ...
0
votes
2answers
55 views

Why is the imaginary unit conventionally put on the right hand side of commutation relations? [closed]

Commutation relations in quantum mechanics are usually written in the form $$ [x_i,p_j] = i \hbar \delta_{ij} $$ with the imaginary unit $i$ put on the right hand side of the equation. But ...
2
votes
0answers
53 views

Derivative of a function of an operator [closed]

I would like to calculate something like $$K\left(z\right)=\dfrac{dF\left(A\left(z\right)+B\left(z\right)\right)}{dz}$$ i.e. the derivative of a function $F$ of a sum of two operators $A$ and $B$ ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

Connection between half and whole integer eigenvalues for orbital angular momentum [duplicate]

I have been trying to follow this derivation from Sakurai and Shankar, pulling from both. I would like to see how the following derivation can be extended to orbital angular momentum, and thus find ...
0
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1answer
41 views

Mutually Commutative

What is the definition of a Mutually Commutative set of operators? I've found articles describing a complete set of mutually commutative operators, but I can't actually find what mutually commutative ...
2
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1answer
2k views

Proof of weaker Baker-Campbell-Hausdorff Formula [duplicate]

Prove the weaker form of the BCH Formula: $$e^A e^B = e^{A + B + \frac{1}{2}[A,B]} $$ with the assumption $[A, [B, A]] = 0; [B, [B,A]] = 0$ Start with $f(\lambda) = e^{\lambda A} e^{\lambda B} ...
0
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0answers
35 views

Commutator for time?

I know that in quantum mechanics, we can define space as the operator $\hat{x}=i\hbar \frac{d}{dp}$ in momentum space,and that position does not commute with momentum. However, in general relativity, ...
2
votes
1answer
127 views

Given a QFT Hamiltonian, is there a unique Lagrangian?

Consider a QFT in one spatial dimension specified by the following Hamiltonian density: $\mathcal{H} = -i \phi^\dagger \frac{\partial}{\partial x} \phi + V(\phi^\dagger,\phi)$ where $\phi$ is a ...
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votes
2answers
146 views

Proving that conservation of momentum doesn't apply to electron in H-atom

To prove that the conservation of linear momentum doesn't apply to electron in H-atom, is it sufficient to show that angular momentum operator ($\hat L$) and momentum operator ($\hat p$) do not ...
0
votes
1answer
205 views

Commutation of Hamiltonian with momentum

In which case does the Hamiltonian $H$ commutes with the momentum $P$? Can anybody help me? With an example? (No particular or strange Hamiltonians and no particular momenta are involved). How can I ...
0
votes
1answer
87 views

Where does this commutator relation come from?

What is the origin of this relation: $$ [H,a_n^\dagger] = \epsilon_n a_n^\dagger $$ for Hamiltonian $H$, creation operator $ a_n^\dagger $, and eigenvalue $ \epsilon_n $. The square brackets denote ...
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votes
3answers
50 views

Commutation Relationship

For the Hamiltonian of the hydrogen atom, does the square of angular momentum, $$L^2 = L_x^2+L_y^2+L_z^2$$ commute with Hamiltonian operator, $$H = \frac{1}{2m}(p_x^2+p_y^2+p_z^2) + V(r)~?$$ Should ...
0
votes
1answer
178 views

Spin operators commutation

Why do the spin operators $ S_{x1}$ and $S_{x2}$ of two particles along the $x$-axis commute i.e $S_{1x}S_{x2}-S_{2x}S_{1x}=0 $ ?
3
votes
1answer
109 views

Proving $[a_k^\dagger, a_q^\dagger]=0$

I am trying to prove the commutation relations between the creation and annihilation operators in field theory. I was already able to show that $[a_k, a_q^\dagger]=i\delta(k-q)$. I want to show that ...