The term "harmonic oscillator" is used to describe any system with a "linear" restoring force that tends to return the system to a equilibrium state. There is both a classical harmonic oscillator and a quantum harmonic oscillator. Both are used to as toy problems that describe many physical systems.

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Calculation of energy eigenvalues of $\hat{x}^4$

I would appreciate help in calculating the energy eigenvalues associated with $\hat{x}^4$, with $\hat{x}$ expressed using the ladder operators for harmonic oscillators. $\hat{x} = ...
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quick question about degeneracy

For two non-interacting particles, with eigenfunctions $\phi_{n1}(x1)$ and $\phi_{n2}(x2)$ in a one-dimensional potential well $V_{(x)}$ with n = 1,2,.... Consider two spinless non-identical ...
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106 views

What happens between two harmonics?

I know that standing waves in a simple harmonic system occur when the "echo" of a wave overlaps completely with the original wave at a certain point in time, doubling the amplitude. And then, because ...
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Does the average momentum vanish for an eigenstate of the simple harmonic oscillator?

Suppose we have a simple harmonic oscillator, let's consider the ground state, $|0\rangle$ and the first excited state $|1\rangle$. $\langle 0|\hat p|0 \rangle$ is zero right? Since the particle can ...
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90 views

Hamiltonian Operator for Harmonic Oscillator

I have been solving the harmonic oscillator problem in quantum mechanics using Algebraic Method and since then I am consulting the books of Tannoudji and Griffiths for that matter. While studying both ...
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54 views

Ladder operator on momentum basis

Since in Quantum mechanics momentum operator can be written in terms of ladder operators $$\widehat{p}=-i\sqrt\frac{{\hbar m \omega}}{2}(\widehat{a}-\widehat{a}^\dagger)$$ these operators operate on ...
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Quantum oscillator, position mean value problem

A quantum harmonic oscillator of mass $m$ and frequency $\omega$ is at time $t=0$ in the state: $$ \left|\psi(t)\right> = \sum_{n=N-\Delta N}^{N+\Delta N}\left|n\right>\frac{1}{\sqrt{2\Delta N ...
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1answer
273 views

Meaning of “Simple” in Simple Pendulum and Simple Harmonic Motion?

I have gone through the Phys.SE question Why is simple harmonic motion called so?. From the 1st answer of this Question it seems to me that another type of "Harmonic motion" is "Damped Harmonic ...
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75 views

solution of pendulum equation [closed]

I have the pendulum expression $$\ddot{\theta}+\omega_{o}^{2}\sin(\theta)=0,$$ where I used a Taylor expansion for the sine term: ...
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164 views

damped and undamped oscillation graph comparison

I have been trying to solve a problem which compares the two motion. If the undamped free harmonic oscillator motion is $ x=A\sin\omega_{o}t$. So the corresponding motion in case of damped motion will ...
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1answer
54 views

Simple harmonic motion [closed]

A uniform straight rod of length $L$ is hinged at one end. It is free to oscillate in vertical plane. Time period of oscillation with small angular amplitude when a point mass of mass equal to that of ...
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528 views

Forced harmonic oscillator with two springs

Consider a vertical system of two springs in series, with a mass(50 g) between them. From below the system is driven by a vibration generator. The setup is shown here, but the picture is taken while ...
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1answer
187 views

Nonzero ground state energy of the quantum harmonic oscillator [duplicate]

Since $\frac{1}{2}\hbar \omega$ is the zero point energy of the ground state of the harmonic oscillator, then there is no way to extract this energy. Therefore, in what way is this value different ...
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Raising and lowering 3D harmonic oscillator state

A good solution to the 3D harmonic oscillator is shown here. This gives the basis states $|n,\ell\rangle$ My question is if there are some operators comparable to the 1D SHO that will raise either n ...
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68 views

Finding Tension in an Elastic String?

I know that this is a homework type question and I'm not asking a particular physics question, but I'm really desperate for help. Here's the question: I tried to divide the string to 2 parts with ...
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1answer
165 views

Eigenstates of a density matrix of continuous variables

Consider a system of two entangled harmonic oscillators. The normalised ground state is denoted by $\psi_0(x_1,x_2)$. The reduced density matrix of the second oscillator is given by: $$\rho_2 = ...
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144 views

What are you studying when you study a Harmonic Oscillator in QM?

This probably is a naive question - so please forgive a self-studier. In the text I am studying, one builds a HO by placing a particle in a potential that increases quadratically from the origin. The ...
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2answers
156 views

Trace as integral

Consider a system of two entangled harmonic oscillators. The normalised ground state is denoted by $\psi_0(x_1,x_2)$. I've been taught that a density matrix is constructed as $\rho = ...
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148 views

Uncoupling a coupled oscillator Hamiltonian by change of variables

I'm working on the problem of two entangled harmonic oscillators with Hamiltonian: $$H = \frac{1}{2} [p_1^2 + p_2^2 + k_0(x_1^2 + x_2^2) + k_1(x_1 - x_2)^2].$$ Introducing the variables $x_± = ...
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141 views

Degeneracy, spherical harmonics

In a 3D oscillator, the energy levels are known to be $(n_x + n_y + n_z + \frac{3}{2})\hbar \omega = (n + \frac{3}{2})\hbar \omega$. Say for $n = 1$, any of the $n$'s can be $1$ and the rest are $0$. ...
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1answer
94 views

Constant of motion

An exercise from Goldstein (9.31-3rd Ed) asks to show that for a one-dimensional harmonic oscillator $u(q,p,t)$ is a constant of motion where $$ u(q,p,t)=\ln(p+im\omega q)-i\omega t $$ and ...
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2answers
706 views

Resonance and a tuning fork

I carried out this experiment in class: I struck a tuning fork with a hammer. The sound lasted for some time. However, when I connected the tuning fork onto a wooden sounding box, the sound lasted ...
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1answer
162 views

Change of variable in harmonic oscillator time independent Schrodinger equation

I was revising the harmonic oscillator for my intro to quantum course and realised I'd sort of accepted a change of variable result without actually being able to get to it. It says: The stationary ...
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118 views

Different hamiltonians for quantum harmonic oscillator?

The Hamiltonian for a classical simple harmonic oscillator is $$ H = \frac{p^2}{2m} + \frac{1}{2}m\omega^2x^2$$ With the usual choice of the ladder operators $$a = ...
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5answers
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Relation between shm and circular motion

I recently read in a book that combination of two simple harmonic motions of equal amplitude in perpendicular directions differing in phase by pi/2 is circular motion. I don't seem to understand this ...
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140 views

How to model “Doppler Distortion” of speakers?

Simple Model w/o Doppler I have a speaker driven by an electrical signal. The pressure at the sampling point is some linear operator acting on the input signal: $L[ s(t)]$. Where $L$ combines the ...
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1answer
178 views

Question on Quantum Harmonic Oscillator

My textbook claims that the uncertainty in position of the particle in a quantum harmonic oscillator is $\frac{A}{\sqrt{2}}$ and the uncertainty in the particle momentum is $\frac{p}{\sqrt{2}}$ ...
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71 views

Mean energy harmonic oscillator

I know that for a particle under the potential $$V(x,y,z)=\frac{k}{2}(x^2+y^2+z^2)$$ the equipartition theorem says that it contributes to the mean energy to $\frac{3k_BT}{2} $ (one half for each ...
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196 views

Normalisation of Linear Harmonic Oscillator - Ladder Operator Method

I was watching the following video on the harmonic oscillator using ladder operators : http://youtu.be/gRdCV9p8sAU?t=30m9s Clicking on the video above will take you to the exact point where my ...
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2answers
114 views

Quantum Mechanics: Momentum operator questions [closed]

I'm asked to determine $\hat{P}|\Psi_0\rangle$, $\langle{\hat{P}}\rangle$, and $\langle\hat{P}^2\rangle$ for $$\Psi_0(u) = \psi_0 + 2\psi_1$$ I understand how to make the matrix for $P$ in regards ...
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1answer
73 views

Is this oscillator driven?

A mass $m$ is attached to a vertical massless spring or a spring constant $k$. Originally, the spring was relaxed because the mass was held by a clip. Suddenly the clip was released. THe mass ...
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1answer
140 views

Faster than critical damping for harmonic oscillator?

The image below shows damping for spring oscillator with Hooke law F=-kx and damped with F=-cv where: k is spring constant x is oscillator position c is damping coefficient v is velocity of oscillator ...
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1answer
70 views

A block falling from a height on a block suspended by spring [closed]

The block suspended by the spring is hanging freely and its mass is M. The small block of mass m is dropped on the bigger block from height h. After the small block is dropped 》》》 I want help in ...
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3answers
89 views

Why the distance between peaks of the probability distribution function decreases when n increases?

In the solution of Schrödinger Equation for harmonic oscillator why the distance between peaks of the probability distribution function decreases when n increases? Is there a good reason for it or is ...
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1answer
246 views

Harmonic Oscillator potential, proof that Gaussians remain Gaussians?

I read in several papers that for a Harmonic Oscillator Hamiltonian in the time dependent Schrödinger equation a Gaussian wave packet remains Gaussian. Unfortunately I could not find any proof for ...
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1answer
169 views

Phase Plot for Harmonic Oscillator

This is probably gonna be a dumb question but I don't know exactly where I am making the mistake. I have been taught in highschool that simple harmonic oscillator phase plot is the $sin(\omega t)$: ...
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1answer
128 views

Heisenberg picture usage - Merzbacher 14.106

I am trying to understand a line in the quantum mechanics book by Merzbacher, specifically the second line of equation 14.106. The problem is a forced quantum harmonic oscillator. The Hamiltonian ...
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85 views

Interesting Harmonic Oscillator Solution

On page 89 of Griffith's QM book, an exact solution to the time-dependent SE equation for the harmonic oscillator is mentioned: $$ ...
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3answers
959 views

Why not drop $\hbar\omega/2$ from the quantum harmonic oscillator energy?

Since energy can always be shifted by a constant value without changing anything, why do books on quantum mechanics bother carrying the term $\hbar\omega/2$ around? To be precise, why do we write $H ...
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1answer
223 views

Correlation Function of ground state; Physical Meaning

I was asked to find the correlation function of the ground state of the QHM: $$\langle0|\hat x(t)\hat x(t-\tau)|0\rangle$$ I found that this evaluated to $\frac{\hbar}{2m\omega}e^{i\omega \tau}$. I ...
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Is strictly harmonic 2D lattice made of Hooke springs possible?

If we connect a set of point masses in a 1D lattice with Hooke springs and consider longitudinal oscillations, we'll have a strictly harmonic system, for which there exist eigenmodes and the frequency ...
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2answers
297 views

Harmonic Oscillator driven by a Dirac delta-like force

Consider that there is no damping for simplicity. As we know, a driving force of the form $\sin(\omega t)$ will make the oscillator at steady state vibrates at the external frequency $\omega$. What ...
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1answer
240 views

Double-spring mass system

We just had a lesson about elementary mass-spring systems (SHO), and I thought about a horizontal situation with two springs with the test mass oscillating in between. If we are to manually stretch ...
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3answers
115 views

Why does $x(0)=0$ for SHO in classical action

In leveraging this PDF to help solve the integral for $S_{cl}$ least action for a Simple harmonic oscillator, I read that I can assume $x_{cl}(0) = 0$ for the classical solution. Why is $x_{cl}(0) ...
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1answer
130 views

Moment of inertia of a system in different cases

A rod of mass $m$ and length $l$ is pivoted at one end to ceiling and free to rotate in the vertical plane. A disc of radius $R$, which is less than $l$, can be fixed at its other end in 2 ways : ...
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206 views

Are Black Holes set to take over the Harmonic Oscillator in the 21st century?

A few years ago I attended a talk given by Andy Strominger entitled Black Holes- The Harmonic Oscillators of the 21st Century. This talk, ...
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2answers
129 views

Showing $K_\pm$ are raising/lowering operators

In this post, I have the following operators defined: $$K_1=\frac 14(p^2-q^2)$$ $$K_2=\frac 14 (pq+qp)$$ $$J_3 = \frac 14 (p^2+q^2)$$ I am given $ J_3|m\rangle = m|m\rangle$ and asked to show that ...
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2answers
380 views

Is it only the ground state of the quantum harmonic oscillator that has the minimum uncertainty product?

We know that the uncertainty product of general states is bounded by the inequality described by Heisenberg's uncertainty relation. And the ground state of the quantum harmonic oscillator falls under ...
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1answer
89 views

How to include Damping in a Simple harmonic oscillator

Im designing a model for Kelvin Method. Some of my calculation results are as follows: Radius of the membrane : 50 micron thickness of the membrane : 3.25 micron resonate frequency : 1.32MHz ...
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1answer
94 views

Oscillator, angular frequency equation

I found the highlighted equation on the Wikipedia on angular frequency, however it doesn't say how it was obtained, could someone please explain that? Also, it says that the spring is massless, if ...