Applies also to pre-Hilbert spaces, rigged Hilbert spaces, and spaces with negative norm or zero-norm states.

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1answer
104 views

What exactly is Schrodinger's Cat? [closed]

What exactly is Schrodinger's Cat? The little bit reading I did led me to believe that he wanted to assert the cat is dead OR alive only if you observe. What does it signify? How did it affect the way ...
0
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1answer
64 views

Combination of quantum numbers for a particle in a 3D box

For a second excited state, the three combination of quantum number corresponds to $$n_{1}=2,n_{2}=2,n_{3}=1$$ or $$n_{1}=2,n_{2}=1,n_{3}=2$$ or $$n_{1}=1,n_{2}=2,n_{3}=2.$$ This is from the text ...
3
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1answer
131 views

Is the energy always discrete?

In the von Neumann axioms for quantum mechanics, the first postulate states that a quantum state is a vector in a separable Hilbert space. It means it is assumed the Hilbert space has a basis with at ...
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0answers
69 views

Are there applications of $L_p$ spaces in quantum mechanics?

In quantum mechanics, there a lot of emphasis on $L^2$ spaces since Hilbert spaces describe states in quantum mechanics, so we have $$ \langle \psi | \psi \rangle = \int |\psi^2(x)|\, dx$$ Even ...
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1answer
78 views

Physical interpretation of the constant coefficient appearing in solution to the Schrodinger equation

The product solution to the Schrodinger's equation is $$\Psi_{n} \left ( x,t \right )=\psi\left ( x \right )\phi\left ( t \right )$$ By superposition, the solution becomes $$\Psi \left ( x,t ...
3
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0answers
51 views

commutation relations in terms of eigenstates scalar product

This question has caught my attention because I was unaware of the fact that the position-momentum canonical commutation relations could be derived out of the only assumption for $\langle x | ...
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0answers
34 views

Superposition of discrete level and continuum: Electron bound and free [duplicate]

Superposition between discrete states of a system is widely considered in the literature, but this system, e.g., a $H$ atom, can also have a continuum in its energy spectrum. Can the state of a ...
23
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5answers
2k views

What is a state in physics?

What is a state in physics? While reading physics, I have heard many a times a "___" system is in "____" state but the definition of a state was never provided (and googling brings me totally ...
0
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1answer
42 views

Why is the wave function an element of the function space? [closed]

The general wave function is of the form $$\Psi \left ( x,y,z,t \right )=\psi \left ( x,y,z \right )T\left ( t \right )$$ Solving via separation of variables and finding the product solutions ...
2
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2answers
121 views

How to interpret the field configuration in quantum field theory?

We often use the Fock space as the start point for our quantum field theory. In the Fock space we have definite physical meanings for the state. For example, the state $$|k_1k_2...k_n\rangle$$ ...
3
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1answer
99 views

Grassmann numbers in the dual space

I'm reading the section on Grassmann numbers in QFT for the Gifted Amateur and I'm confused by something said therein: First, they define a coherent state for fermions $\rvert \eta \rangle$ as ...
4
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2answers
129 views

Interpretation of $\langle \phi | A | \psi \rangle$ [duplicate]

If the current state of some quantum system is $| \psi \rangle$, what is the physical interpretation of $$ \langle \phi | A | \psi \rangle $$ where $|\phi\rangle$ is some other -maybe the same- ...
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4answers
138 views

Is there a reason why probability density is written as $\psi^*\psi$ instead of $\psi\psi^*$?

As the title states, I see $|\psi|^2$ written as $\psi^*\psi$ instead of $\psi\psi^*$. Are both correct or is there a reason behind it? As far as I'm aware, the only time I see this sort of ordering ...
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1answer
49 views

Second Quantization: The Identity Operator does not Commute?

Let me take the simplest possible example. Consider the fermonic Fock-space $\Lambda^*(\mathbb{C}^n)$ built out of a finite-dimensional, oriented single-particle Hilbert space $\mathbb{C}^n$ with ...
2
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1answer
119 views

In the algebraic formulation of Quantum Mechanics, how do probability amplitudes naturally arise?

In the algebraic formulation of quantum mechanics, consider $\mathcal{B}(\mathcal{H})$ as the set of all bounded operators on $\mathcal{H}$ (with involution, norm, etc.), which form a C*-algebra $C$. ...
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3answers
2k views

Quantum Joke (not a real joke, not a riddle)

Supposing I want to make a quantum joke, like writing this on a coffee machine: $$| \text{Status}\rangle = \frac{1}{\sqrt{2}}\ \big( | \text{Working}\rangle \color{red}{\pm} | \text{Down}\rangle ...
2
votes
2answers
105 views

Normalisation of free particle wavefunction

The wavefunction $\Psi(x,t)$ for a free particle is given by $$\Psi(x,t) = A e^{i(kx-\frac{\hbar k}{2m}t)}$$ This wavefunction is non-normalisable. Does this mean that free particles do not exist in ...
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1answer
120 views

Expectation value of an operator and commutator relation

I have a quantum operator $A.$ It's expectation value is constant respect to time. I mean $$\langle \psi(t)|A|\psi(t)\rangle$$ is a constant values. If I know $|\psi(t)\rangle$ is not an eigenstate ...
2
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1answer
98 views

Inserting the resolution of identity correctly

In a text on path integrals, I find the following: \begin{equation} \langle q_{j+1}|e^{-i(\hat{p}/2m)\delta t}|q_j\rangle = \int\frac{dp}{2\pi}\langle q_{j+1}|e^{-i(\hat{p}/2m)\delta ...
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1answer
87 views

Momentum in quantum harmonic oscillator with step up and step down operators [closed]

I'm hitting a wall in my understanding of the momentum operator in a quantum harmonic oscillator. I've showed that $p = (a^\dagger - a)\sqrt{\frac{m w \hbar}{2}}i$ where $a^\dagger$ and $a$ are the ...
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2answers
193 views

What is a Hilbert Space?

The Hilbert Space is the space where wavefunction live. But how would I describe it in words? Would it be something like: The infinite dimensional vector space consisting of all functions of ...
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2answers
71 views

Simple question: Euclidean versus Hermitian form

This may be a basic question, but why is the inner product of bra and ket Euclidean inner product [link] and not more general Hermitian form? [link] Is there something fundamental stating that $M$ ...
-1
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1answer
41 views

Parity operator eigenstates [closed]

I have a problem I cannot solve on my own. I have given two states $\psi_1$ and $\psi_2$ and an Operator $O$ such that $P \psi_1 = \epsilon_1 \psi_2$, $P \psi_2 = \epsilon_2 \psi_2$ and $POP^{-1} = ...
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1answer
37 views

State-operator map, and scalar fields

Up so far, i have been studied state-operator correspondence, $i.e$, i have been questioned State operator corrponding $i.e$ $S\times S$ to $R^2$ which was wrong question. By studing Ginsparg's ...
3
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1answer
148 views

In nonrelativistic Quantum Mechanics, is the expectation value of a sum of operators always equal to the sum of the expectation values?

Suppose that $\lvert \psi_n \rangle$ are the eigenvectors of a Hamiltonian, $\hat{H}$, which span some Hilbert space $\mathcal{H}$ and satisfy $$\hat{H}\lvert \psi_n \rangle = E_n \lvert \psi_n ...
3
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0answers
80 views

Picture-independence of quantum mechanics

I've been thinking about the equivalence of the Heisenberg and Schrödinger pictures of quantum mechanics in the following terms lately: a quantum system is a Hilbert space $\mathcal{H}$ equipped with ...
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2answers
118 views

Coefficients and wavefunction in quantum mechanics

In general quantum mechanics we represent the state of a system with a state vector $| \psi \rangle $ in some Hilbert space in some base. Assuming a complete discrete set of bases vectors $ |n \rangle ...
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2answers
47 views

Probability that a measurement will be in some set

Let $\mathcal{H}$ be the Hilbert space of a quantum system and $A$ one observable in $\mathcal{H}$. If $A$ has discrete spectrum $\{a_n : n \in \mathbb{N}\}$ for simplicity, then by the postulates of ...
4
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5answers
187 views

Looking for clarification on superposition [closed]

I have always had a hard time accepting the concept of superposition from quantum mechanics. I know that the leading physicists say that the cat is both alive and dead until it is observed and that an ...
4
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3answers
301 views

Dirac notation - specific acting orientation for operators

I have this doubt: Imagine two operators $A$ and $B$ and the state $\psi$. I know that the following statement is true: $$\langle\psi| A|\psi\rangle^*=\langle\psi| A^\dagger|\psi\rangle$$ But ...
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0answers
12 views

Numeric fermiomic creation operators and unit cell

I have to do some numerics (e.g. FFT in Maple/Octave) on a 1D fermionic chain without forces between the particles. The description says that two sites build an unit cell. What does this mean? And ...
2
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1answer
301 views

Simple QFT simulation - how to do it

I would like to write a simple QFT simulation for a free scalar field with a cubic interaction term. However, I got stuck a bit. I will try to describe what I think I understand. I want to have a ...
2
votes
2answers
68 views

Expectation value of an imaginary operator acting on a real function

In a video (http://youtu.be/r_gBQ_qhg8U?t=9m58s) it's stated that a matrix element of an imaginary operator acting on a real wave function is zero, i.e. ...
3
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1answer
133 views

What does a line above a commutator, e.g. $\overline{[x, H]}$ mean?

What does this notation mean in relation to quantum mechanics? $$\overline{[x,H]}\qquad\text{or}\qquad\overline{[p,H]}\tag{1}$$ I know $[x,H]$ is just the commutator e.g $xH-Hx$, and the ...
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2answers
65 views

Show that $|n\rangle$ is correctly normalized [closed]

Prove that $$|n\rangle = \frac1{\sqrt{n!}} (\hat a^\dagger)^n |0\rangle$$ is correctly normalized. I know I must show its bra-ket equals 1 but I don't know what bra-ket notation really means, so ...
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0answers
123 views

Is there a physical significance to non-normal states of the algebra of observables?

Quantum theory may be formalized in several different ways. Generally, the physical discussion of different states of a quantum system distinguishes pure and mixed states, and then subsumes both in a ...
4
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1answer
98 views

Closure relation for degenerate eigenkets

Consider an observable in quantum mechanics, with a degenerate eigenvalue in a continuous spectrum. Is it possible for such an eigenvalue to have a finite degeneracy? If the degeneracy is infinite, ...
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2answers
95 views

Griffiths use of a linear transformation on basis vectors. Need help with derivation

In Griffiths' intro to Quantum Mechanics 2nd edition, in the appendix A.3 which is a review on linear algebra and matrixes (on page 441), he states that a linear transformation on a set of basis ...
7
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1answer
155 views

Is there a mathematical basis for Born rule?

Wave function determines complex amplitudes to possible measurement outcomes. The Born Rule states that the probability of obtaining some measurement outcome is equal to the square of the ...
4
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0answers
76 views

Underlying C*Algebra operators in standard quantum mechanics?

Linearity in standard quantum mechanics (QM) is the key to making the math possible in this field, but the presence of nonlinear operators in QM is what is more generally dealt with. Working with the ...
3
votes
1answer
146 views

Why, in quantum field theory, is $\hat{a}(p)|0\rangle=0$?

My Quantum Field Theory lecturer just said that $\hat{a}(p)|0\rangle=0$ because the vacuum state contains no particles. Now, according to Wikipedia, "according to quantum mechanics, the vacuum ...
5
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3answers
184 views

Inverse Quantum Operator

In the quantum harmonic oscillator problem, how would one go about calculating $$\left\langle n\left|\frac{1}{X^2}\right|n\right\rangle$$ using raising and lowering operators $a^{\dagger}, a$ only, ...
0
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2answers
203 views

Aren't all spin states (up, down, left, right, in, out) orthogonal?

Hopefully someone can clear up a basic misconception I am having about the nature of spin state vectors. According to the book i am reading, The basis vectors of up/down spin are orthogonal to each ...
1
vote
1answer
50 views

Show that translation and rotation operator are unitary

I have a problem understanding how to show that operators are unitary if they are not in the "normal" matrix form. The translation operator is defined as $$(T_v \psi)(x) = \psi(x-v)$$ and the ...
2
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1answer
82 views

Which definition of a quantum field is right?

In introductory quantum field theory, I was taught that, given a single-particle Hilbert space $\mathcal H$, the quantum field operator for that type of particle was a mapping $\varphi(x)$ from ...
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1answer
69 views

Transformations of states in quantum mechanics

In Classical Mechanics we usually describe the possible configurations of a system by points on a smooth manifold $M$ which is the configuration manifold of the system. In that case, when we talk ...
2
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2answers
121 views

Does every Hilbert Space carry a representation of Poincare group?

We know all infinite dimensional Hilbert Spaces are unitarily equivalent. It should follow therefore that if I have an unitary representation of say Lorentz or Poincare group on one infinite ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

Why are eigenspaces of a Hermitian operator mutually orthogonal? [closed]

In Quantum Mechanics, from the properties of the solution of Schrodinger's Equation inside the infinite well, is that they are: Mutually orthogonal for different eigenvalues. Orthonormal. Complete. ...
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1answer
56 views

Unitary Transfomation from One Basis to Another [closed]

So we have two orthonormal linearly independent basis $\{ |\phi_1 \rangle, \dots, |\phi_n \rangle \}$ and $\{ |\psi_1 \rangle, \dots, |\psi_n \rangle \}$. We can express the basis vectors of the ...
0
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1answer
69 views

Quantum States, Hilbert Space and Time

I'm having troubles with the assertion "(normalizable) wave-functions constitutes (projective) Hilbert space". The standard argument I find for this seems to go as following: say $\Psi(\vec{x},t)$ is ...