The Hamiltonian formalism is a formalism in Classical Mechanics. Besides Lagrangian Mechanics, it is an effective way of reformulating classical mechanics in a simple way. Very useful in Quantum Mechanics, specifically the Heisenberg and Schrodinger formulations. Unlike Lagrangian ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

6
votes
3answers
370 views

Poisson structure comes from hamiltonian?

I am interested in studying quantization, but it seems I am lacking the basics of classical mechanics. Any help would be appreciated. I would first like to ask what is necessary to have a ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

What does symplecticity imply?

Symplectic systems are a common object of studies in classical physics and nonlinearity sciences. At first I assumed it was just another way of saying Hamiltonian, but I also heard it in the context ...
5
votes
2answers
669 views

Hamiltonian mechanics and special relativity?

Is there a relativistic version of Hamiltonian mechanics? If so, how is it formulated (what are the main equations and the form of Hamiltonian)? Is it a common framework, if not then why? It would be ...
7
votes
4answers
591 views

Hamiltonian and the space-time structure

I'm reading Arnold's "Mathematical Methods of Classical Mechanics" but I failed to find rigorous development for the allowed forms of Hamiltonian. Space-time structure dictates the form of ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Hamilton-Jacobi Equation

In the Hamilton-Jacobi equation, we take the partial time derivative of the action. But the action comes from integrating the Lagrangian over time, so time seems to just be a dummy variable here and ...
5
votes
3answers
291 views

What are some mechanics examples with a globally non-generic symplecic structure?

In the framework of statistical mechanics, in books and lectures when the fundamentals are stated, i.e. phase space, Hamiltons equation, the density etc., phase space seems usually be assumed to be ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

How does one quantize the phase-space semiclassically?

Often, when people give talks about semiclassical theories they are very shady about how quantization actually works. Usually they start with talking about a partition of $\hbar$-cells then end up ...
1
vote
1answer
477 views

Angular momentum conservation in a central field through the Hamiltonian

In my teacher's notes there is a discussion of the Hamiltonian for a central force field with potential $V(r)$. The Hamiltonian is formulated in spherical polar coordinates: ...
8
votes
1answer
466 views

Dirac equation as canonical quantization?

First of all, I'm not a physicist, I'm mathematics phd student, but I have one elementary physical question and was not able to find answer in standard textbooks. Motivation is quite simple: let me ...
9
votes
1answer
446 views

Relation between Dirac's generalized Hamiltonian dynamics method and path integral method to deal with constraints

What is the relation between path integral methods for dealing with constraints (constrained Hamiltonian dynamics involving non-singular Lagrangian) and Dirac's method of dealing with such systems ...
3
votes
2answers
318 views

Elimination of velocities from momenta equations for singular Lagrangian

this doubt is related to Generalized Hamiltonian Dynamics paper by Dirac. Consider the set of $n$ equations : $p_i$ = $∂L/∂v_i$, (where $v_i$ is $q_i$(dot) = $dq_i/dt$, or time derivative of ...
1
vote
0answers
212 views

How important are constrained Hamiltonian dynamics and BRST transformation as a formalism?

I am to study BRST transformations, for which I'm currently trying to understand constrained Hamiltonian dynamics to treat systems with singular Lagrangians. The crude recipe followed is Lagrangian -> ...
5
votes
3answers
624 views

The number of independent variables in the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian methods in Classical Mechanics

It's told in Landau - Classical Mechanics, that in the Hamiltonian method, generalized coordinates $q_j$ and generalized momenta $p_j$ are independent variables of a mechanical system. Anyway, in the ...
4
votes
3answers
480 views

Generalizing Heisenberg Uncertainty Priniciple

Writing the relationship between canonical momenta $\pi _i$ and canonical coordinates $x_i$ $$\pi _i =\text{ }\frac{\partial \mathcal{L}}{\partial \left(\frac{\partial x_i}{\partial t}\right)}$$ ...
1
vote
0answers
132 views

An electron is subjected to an electromagnetic field using the canonical equations solve

So I was given the following vector field: $\vec{A}(t)=\{A_{0x}cos(\omega t + \phi_x), A_{0y}cos(\omega t + \phi_y), A_{0z}cos(\omega t + \phi_z)\}$ Where the amplitudes $A_{0i}$ and phase shifts ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Lagrangian mechanics vs Hamiltonian mechanics [duplicate]

First of all, what are the differences between these two: Lagrangian mechanics and Hamiltonian mechanics? And secondly, do I need to learn both in order to study quantum mechanics and quantum field ...
2
votes
1answer
273 views

A question regarding particle trajectories in the symplectic manifold formalism

How to solve a free particle on a 2-sphere using symplectic manifold formalism of classical mechanics ? Is there a way to get coriolis effect directly, without going into Newton mechanics? And is ...
3
votes
2answers
317 views

Hamilton's equations in terms of initial conditions

I'm trying to understand the way that Hamilton's equations have been written in this paper. It looks very similar to the usual vector/matrix form of Hamilton's equations, but there is a difference. ...
7
votes
2answers
749 views

Lorentz invariance of the 3 + 1 decomposition of spacetime

Why is allowed decompose the spacetime metric into a spatial part + temporal part like this for example $$ds^2 ~=~ (-N^2 + N_aN^a)dt^2 + 2N_adtdx^a + q_{ab}dx^adx^b$$ ($N$ is called lapse, $N_a$ is ...
7
votes
4answers
939 views

Connection between Poisson Brackets and Symplectic Form

Jose and Saletan say the matrix elements of the Poisson Brackets (PB) in the $ {q,p} $ basis are the same as those of the inverse of the symplectic matrix $ \Omega^{-1} $, whereas the matrix elements ...
22
votes
5answers
4k views

Why not using Lagrangian, instead of Hamiltonian, in non relativistic QM?

When we studied classical mechanics on the undergraduate level, on the level of Taylor, we covered Hamiltonian as well as Lagrangian mechanics. Now when we studied QM, on the level of Griffiths, we ...
1
vote
0answers
535 views

Square of Laplace–Runge–Lenz vector in Hydrogen atom [closed]

I have a problem. I've tried this question, but I don't get the correct expression. Can someone give me some ideas? Thanks! Consider the Hydrogen Atom Hamiltonian: $$ H = (\mathbf p^2/2 ...
8
votes
3answers
107 views

Constructing a Hamiltonian (as a polynomial of $q_i$ and $p_i$) from its spectrum

For a countable sequence of positive numbers $S=\{\lambda_i\}_{i\in N}$ is there a construction producing a Hamiltonian with spectrum $S$ (or at least having the same eigenvalues for $i\leq s$ for ...
1
vote
2answers
625 views

Canonical transformations and conservation of energy

I have an important doubt about the nature of canonical transformations in hamiltonian mechanics. Suppose I have a one-degree-of-freedom lagrangian system, whose hamiltonian depends explicitly on ...
2
votes
1answer
213 views

Question on 1st order Lagrangian Derivation in Faddeev-Jackiw Formalism

I'm looking at this reference (sorry it's a postscript file, but I can't find a pdf version on the web. This paper describes a similar procedure). The topic is the Faddeev-Jackiw treatment of ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

Abstract, generic derivations of energy

How generic can be derivation of energy? In a system with gravity and masses – it is potential energy and kinetic energy. What if a constraint would be specified that no mass and velocity should be ...
2
votes
1answer
479 views

Origins of the principle of least time in classical mechanics

Is it possible to derive the principle of least time from the principle of least action in lagrangian or hamiltonian mechanics? Or is Fermat's principle more fundamental than the principle of least ...
1
vote
1answer
696 views

Conjugate Variables and Fourier Transforms in Classical Physics

Let q be a generalized coordinate with a conjugate momentum p and a potential resulting in a periodic motion of q. What is the meaning of the Fourier transform of q(t) over its period? Can this be ...
2
votes
2answers
535 views

Correct application of Laplacian Operator

Not a physicist, and I'm having trouble understanding how to apply the Laplacian-like operator described in this paper and the original. We let: $$ \hat{f}(x) = f(x) + \frac{\int H(x,y)\psi(y) ...
7
votes
2answers
133 views

Group of symmetries of Lagrange's equations

Consider the following statements, for a classical system whose configuration space has dimension $d$: Lagrange equations admit a smaller group of "symmetries" (coordinate change under which ...
6
votes
3answers
562 views

Analogue of Princeton Companion to Mathematics for Physics?

I would like to know if there are compendiums much like the Princeton Companion to Mathematics for physics (especially classical physics: fluid mechanics, elasticity theory, Hamiltonian formalism of ...
2
votes
1answer
200 views

Degeneracy and the Hamiltonian

How many linearly independent eigenfunctions can be associated with one degenerate eigenvalue of the Hamiltonian operator? (Is there a limit since it contains a 2nd order differential operator?) ...
4
votes
1answer
39 views

Connections of iterative solvers for large systems of equation in Physics?

I am trying to find the domains in physics where solving large systems of equations is computationally expensive. The sparse systems are of my particular interest, where the input matrix A is in GBs ...
0
votes
2answers
505 views

Phase space of a discrete dynamical system

Suppose a dynamical system of one variable $x$ with discrete time-steps. I've seen in some papers a type of graph in which $x(n+1)$ is plotted versus $x(n)$. My questions are : 1/ Can this be ...
5
votes
2answers
970 views

Energy operator

Does the Hamiltonian always translate to the energy of a system? What about in QM? So by the Schrodinger equation, is it true then that $i\hbar{\partial\over\partial t}|\psi\rangle=H|\psi\rangle$ ...
18
votes
1answer
521 views

Sympletic structure of General Relativity

Inspired by physics.SE: http://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/15571/does-the-dimensionality-of-phase-space-go-up-as-the-universe-expands/15613 It made me wonder about symplectic structures in ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

To what extent is the “minimal substitution” or “minimal coupling” for the EM vector potential valid?

In all text books (and papers for that matter) about QFT and the classical limit of relativistic equations, one comes across the "minimal substitution" to introduce the magnetic potential into the ...
11
votes
1answer
2k views

Lagrangian of Schrodinger field

The usual Schrodinger Lagrangian is $$ \tag 1 i(\psi^{*}\partial_{t}\psi ) + \frac{1}{2m} \psi^{*}(\nabla^2)\psi, $$ which gives the correct equations of motion, with conjugate momentum for $\psi^{*}$ ...
2
votes
2answers
270 views

Why is it important that Hamilton's equations have the four symplectic properties and what do they mean?

The symplectic properties are: time invariance conservation of energy the element of phase space volume is invariant to coordinate transformations the volume the phase space element is invariant ...
1
vote
1answer
381 views

Sudden change in the Hamiltonian

Could someone explain what this sentence mean? "If the Hamiltonian changes suddenly by a finite amount, the wavefunction must change continuously in order that the time-dependent Schrodinger equation ...
2
votes
1answer
599 views

Expectation of a commutation relation

Is there any significance to: $\langle[H,\hat{O}]\rangle =0$ (which can easily be shown) where $H$ is the Hamiltonian, $\hat{O}$ is an arbitrary operator? Thanks.
14
votes
4answers
6k views

When is the Hamiltonian of a system not equal to its total energy?

I thought the Hamiltonian was always equal to the total energy of a system but have read that this isn't always true. Is there an example of this and does the Hamiltonian have a physical ...
1
vote
1answer
227 views

interpretation of $\{H,L^2\}$

In Hamiltonian mechanics, we show $\{H,L_z\}=0$, which can be interpreted as the conservation of angular momentum around $Oz$. Following the same idea, how can we interprete $\{H,L^2\}$? Is the ...
1
vote
3answers
631 views

Noether's theorem and “translations” of the Hamiltonian function

In a nutshell, Noether's theorem states that for every continuous symmetry a corresponding conserved quantity exists. Now, the Hamiltonian equations of motion (let's talk about a classical system ...
2
votes
0answers
356 views

Calculation of the non-Gaussity parameter for primordial cosmological perturbations by the ADM Formalism

Maldacena has used the ADM Formalism in one of his papers (http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0210603) in computing the the three point correlation function (i.e the non-Gaussianity) parameter for ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is the symplectic manifold version of Hamiltonian mechanics used in Newtonian mechanics?

Books such as Mathematical methods of classical mechanics describe an approach to classical (Newtonian/Galilean) mechanics where Hamiltonian mechanics turn into a theory of symplectic forms on ...
5
votes
1answer
325 views

formal framework for talking about 'minimal couplings'

usually on physical theories one would have Lagrangians or Hamiltonians with multiple fields; say, a vector $A_{\mu}$ and a scalar $\phi$ and one would postulate ad hoc a coupling between the fields ...
16
votes
3answers
4k views

Physical meaning of Legendre transformation

I would like to know the physical meaning of the Legendre transformation, if there is any? I've used it in thermodynamics and classical mechanics and it seemed only a change of coordinates?
1
vote
2answers
323 views

Multiple classical paths from Hamilton's principle

Previous posts such as this ask about types of stationary point in Hamilton's Principle. There is, however, another aspect to discuss: the question as to whether the extremal path is unique. One ...
6
votes
2answers
493 views

How do we resolve operator ordering ambiguities when quantizing generic nonlinear second-class constraints?

Dirac came up with a general theory of constraints, including second-class constraints. To quantize such systems, he first computed the Dirac bracket classically, and only then "promoted" the ...