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17
votes
1answer
488 views

Why do quasicrystals have well-defined Fourier transforms?

I was recently reading about quasicrystals, and I was really surprised to learn that even though they do not have a periodic structure, and only have long range order in a very different sense to the ...
7
votes
1answer
323 views

Double connectivity of $SO(3)$ group manifold

Is there any physical significance of the fact that the group manifold (parameter space) of $SO(3)$ is doubly connected? EDIT 1: Let me clarify my question. It was too vague. There exists two ...
3
votes
1answer
122 views

Is the system of equations of electrostatics underdetermined or overdetermined? [duplicate]

The following equations are equations of electrostatics: $$\nabla \times \vec E=0$$ $$\nabla\cdot\vec E=\dfrac{\rho}{\epsilon_0}.$$ These are 4 independent equations, while $\vec E$ has only 3 ...
6
votes
3answers
246 views

Can eigenstates of a Hilbert space be thought of as delta functions?

Say we have an observable that describes a Hilbert space and that observable acts on state kets. Lets take the position observable for example. Then $\langle y|x\rangle = \delta(y - x)$. But can the ...
4
votes
1answer
191 views

Continuity domain for momentum operator

I know this is essentially a mathematic question, but I received no answer on math SE. Moreover it has a direct application in physics, so I thought to ask this here too. The momentum operator in one ...
-2
votes
1answer
125 views

interaction between mathematical structures [closed]

From a physicist's perspective there are several situations in which somehow arbitrary choices of mathematical structures can be made. One can describe a system from different perspectives, etc. ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

interaction of mathematical structures (rephrased) [duplicate]

From a physicist's perspective there are several situations in which somehow arbitrary choices of mathematical structures can be made. One can describe a system from different perspectives, etc. ...
5
votes
1answer
217 views

String theory in the context of quantization prescriptions

My new question here: has string theory been analyzed somewhere in the context of various quantization prescriptions formulated in a mathematically sound way? I mean something like geometric ...
2
votes
2answers
226 views

Harmonic Oscillator - Energy quantisation

The one-dimensional quantum HO can be solved in Schrodinger representation by getting Hermite Differential Equation $$ \frac{d^2y}{dx^2} - 2x \frac{dy}{dx} + \lambda y = 0 $$ with solutions $$ y(x) = ...
24
votes
4answers
2k views

How do we know that heat is a differential form?

In thermodynamics, the first law can be written in differential form as $$dU = \delta Q - \delta W$$ Here, $dU$ is the differential $1$-form of the internal energy but $\delta Q$ and $\delta W$ are ...
3
votes
1answer
102 views

Determining the group associated with a given potential?

I'm trying to understand how symmetry groups are related to potentials of the Schrodinger equation. In particular, I wish to know if it is possible to find the symmetry group of this potential $$V(x) ...
0
votes
1answer
657 views

Showing that an operator is Hermitian

Consider the operator $$T=pq^3+q^3p=-i\frac{d}{dq}q^3-iq^3\frac{d}{dq}$$ defined to act on the Hilbert Space $H=L^2(\mathbb{R},dq)$ with the common dense domain $S(\mathbb{R})$. Here $S(\mathbb{R})$ ...
3
votes
2answers
303 views

Gaussian type integral with negative power of variable in integrand

How can we compute the integral $\int_{-\infty}^\infty t^n e^{-t^2/2} dt$ when $n=-1$ or $-2$? It is a problem (1.11) in Prof James Nearing's course Mathematical Tools for Physics. Can a situation ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

How does the sum of the series “1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6…” to infinity = “-1/12”? [duplicate]

How does the sum of the series “1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6…” to infinity = “-1/12”, in the context of physics? I heard Lawrence Krauss say this once during a debate with Hamza Tzortzis ...
3
votes
1answer
96 views

Differential Realizations of certain algebras

I'm a first year graduate student in Mathematical Physics, and I am trying to generalise a certain method involving the so-called "Differential realizations" of certain algebras. The problem I'm ...
5
votes
3answers
275 views

Countable Matrix Representation

In my quantum mechanics class, my professor explained that the Hamiltonian along with position and momentum operators can be represented by matrices of countable dimension. This is especially usefull ...
4
votes
1answer
182 views

Algebraic formulation of QFT and unbounded operators

In AQFT one specifies the structure of the observables as a $C^*$-algebra. This seems to excludes algebras that don't have a norm, such as the Heisenberg algebra. Fortunately for this case one turns ...
8
votes
4answers
541 views

Using supersymmetry outside high energy/particle physics

Are there applications of supersymmetry in other branches of physics other than high energy/particle physics?
8
votes
2answers
455 views

Is the step of analytic continuation unavoidable or can you model around it?

One sometimes considers the analytic continuation of certain quantities in physics and take them seriously. More so than the direct or actual values, actually. For example if you use the procedure ...
0
votes
1answer
76 views

How magnets create electricity in conductors?

what are the reasons for current appearing in a wire when wire is in a changing magnetic field?
4
votes
0answers
102 views

Coleman-Mandula theorem in mathematical language

Every supersymmetry text starts off mentioning the Coleman-Mandula theorem. Often it is introduced using rather colloquial terminology. I was wondering if anyone knew a precise mathematical ...
3
votes
1answer
147 views

What is the Weyl algebra of a confined bosonic particle?

The abstract Weyl Algebra $W_n$ is the *-algebra generated by a family of elements $U(u),V(v)$ with $u,v\in\mathbb{R}^n$ such that (Weyl relations) $$U(u)V(v)=V(v)U(u)e^{i u\cdot v}\ \ Commutation\ ...
6
votes
0answers
235 views

Prequisites to learn Topological Field Theory? [closed]

Sorry for the somewhat qualitative question but what are the essential prerequisites for someone wanting to learn topological field theory from say the more physical side of things? The math side also ...
5
votes
1answer
168 views

Contour for Klein-Gordon field transition amplitude

In calculating transition amplitude for Klein-Gordon real-scalar field, I encountered the integral, $$ \frac{-i}{2(2\pi)^2\Delta x} \int^{\infty}_{-\infty} \,dk \frac{ke^{ik\Delta ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Circulation of the gauge potential around an infinitesimal loop: how to get the correct gauge field strength tensor

I've been puzzling with the problem below for more than a hour since it is misleadingly discussed in some textbooks, so I believe it deserves a solution here. Any comments are welcome. I'm trying to ...
14
votes
3answers
528 views

about the Atiyah-Segal axioms on topological quantum field theory

Trying to go through the page on Topological quantum field theory - The original Atiyah-Segal axioms - "Let $\Lambda$ be a commutative ring with 1, Atiyah originally proposed the axioms of a ...
8
votes
3answers
755 views

Boundary layer theory in fluids learning resources

I'm trying to understand boundary layer theory in fluids. All I've found are dimensional arguments, order of magnitude arguments, etc... What I'm looking for is more mathematically sound arguments. ...
5
votes
1answer
398 views

Divergent issue of Madelung's constant

This is a question triggered by this post Madelung's constant is defined to the coefficient of electrostatic potential energy in a ionic crystal. In the example of $NaCl$, \begin{equation} M = ...
8
votes
1answer
741 views

Divergent Series

Why is it that divergent series make sense? Specifically, by basic calculus a sum such as $1 - 1 + 1 ...$ describes a divergent series (where divergent := non-convergent sequence of partial sums) ...
0
votes
1answer
199 views

Making a cut trough a center of mass, can the masses of the pieces be equal?

Let's say point $P$ is the center of mass of an irregularly shaped object. If I make a straight cut trough point $P$ and split the object in two, is it possible for the two pieces to have the same ...
6
votes
1answer
291 views

Wightman axioms and gauge symmetries

I have a basic understanding of the Wightman axioms for QFT. I was reading the about the Mass Gap problem for simple compact gauge groups and was wondering how the gauge group is supposed to be ...
5
votes
3answers
315 views

Evaluating commutator of $[\operatorname{sign}(X),\, \operatorname{sign}(P)]$

I wish to evaluate the following commutator: $[\operatorname{sign}(X),\, \operatorname{sign}(P)]$. Is there a general method for evaluating $[\operatorname{f}(X), \operatorname{f}(P)]$? I thought of a ...
1
vote
2answers
236 views

Can we have a physical interpretation for a time independent Schrodinger equation of this form?

I am interested in a time independent Schrodinger equation of this form. $$F*\psi - \frac{\hbar^2}{2m} \frac{\partial^2{\psi}}{\partial{x^2}} = E\psi$$ Here the product $V\psi$ is replaced by the ...
2
votes
0answers
72 views

A question about polarization in quantum mechanics

We start our question we a definition A subbundle $P\subset TM^{\mathbf{C}}$ of the complexified tangent bundle is called a complex polarization if \ $P$ is Lagrangian P involutive dim$P\cap\bar ...
48
votes
11answers
7k views

Quantum Field Theory from a mathematical point of view

I'm a student of mathematics with not much background in physics. I'm interested in learning Quantum field theory from a mathematical point of view. Are there any good books or other reference ...
3
votes
0answers
109 views

Geometric quantization AND nuclear physics

Classical mechanics has a natural mathematical setting in symplectic geometry and it may be asked if the same is true for quantum mechanics. Geometric quantization is one formalization of the notion ...
2
votes
1answer
321 views

A question about Fermi-Dirac Distribution function

It seems more like a mathematical question, about the property of Fermi-Dirac Distribution function $$f=\frac{1}{e^{(E-\mu)/k_BT}+1}$$ where $\mu$ is the chemical potential and $k_B$ is the Boltzmann ...
6
votes
1answer
161 views

Supersymmetric generalisation of the bosonic $\sigma$ model in QM

I am reading some lecture notes which demonstrate how various models in SUSY QM can be used to obtain topological invariants such as the Euler characteristic from the Witten Index. The following ...
1
vote
0answers
81 views

Prereqs for The Geometry of Physics by Frankel [duplicate]

I'm interested in giving The Geometry of Physics a read, and I was wondering what the mathematical and (more importantly) physical prerequisites are. My background is a bit stronger on the ...
4
votes
3answers
734 views

Comparison of 1D and 3D wave functions

When discussing the Schroedinger equation in spherical coordinates, it is standard practice in QM handbooks to point out that the radial part of the 3-dimensional wave equation bears a strong analogy ...
9
votes
9answers
1k views

Is causality a formalised concept in physics?

I have never seen a “causality operator” in physics. When people invoke the informal concept of causality aren’t they really talking about consistency (perhaps in a temporal context)? For example, if ...
1
vote
2answers
205 views

Separation of variables in various PDEs, physical meaning

The method of separation of variables produces an undetermined separation constant and a family of solutions indexed by the values of this constant. For instance, in the case of an infinitely long ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Transferring CFT correlations from $\mathbb{R}^3$ to $S^3$

There seems to be a simple method to transfer a CFT's correlations from $\mathbb{R}^3$ to $S^3$ but I am not understanding why it is supposed to work. The idea is that somehow because, $ds^2_{S^3} = ...
4
votes
2answers
309 views

Are all scattering states un-normalizable?

I am an undergraduate studying quantum physics with the book of Griffiths. in 1-D problems, it said a free particle has un-normalizable states but normalizable states can be obtained by sum up the ...
5
votes
2answers
260 views

Is it normal for physical functions to lack a 2nd derivative?

My question is about the appearance of a non-analytic function in the formula for the resistive force in air or other medium. Considering the 1-dimensional case as covered by Walter Lewin in his 8.01 ...
7
votes
1answer
253 views

Can You Obtain New Physics from the use of Fractional Derivatives?

I was curious if anyone could give me an example of the use of fractional derivatives in physics and explain what they offer that "conventional" mathematics does not (in terms of new physics and not ...
9
votes
2answers
869 views

The derivation of fractional equations

Recently I saw some physical problems that can be modeled by equations with fractional derivatives, and I had some doubts: is it possible to write an action that results in an equation with fractional ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

Are there some websites for self learning of advanced mathematics? [duplicate]

Are there some websites for self learining of advanced mathematics? For example there is perimeterscholars for self study of theoretical physics, but I haven't found some good websites providing ...
2
votes
2answers
341 views

What restrictions on time boundary conditions does it have to use Fourier transform to solve wave equation?

The wave equation can be solved using Fourier transform, by assuming a solution of the form of $$\mathbf{E}(x,y,z,t)~=~\mathbf{E}(x,y,z)e^{j\omega t}$$ and then reducing the equation to the Helmholtz ...
5
votes
1answer
309 views

Grassmann Variables Representation?

It might be a silly question, but I was never mathematically introduced to the topic. Is there a representation for Grassmann Variables using real field. For example, gamma matrices have a ...