DO NOT USE THIS TAG just because your question involves math! If your question is on simplification of a mathematical expression, please ask it at math.stackexchange.com The mathematics tag covers non-applied pure mathematical disciplines that are traditionally not part of the mathematical physics ...

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3
votes
2answers
281 views

Tensor Product of Hilbert spaces

This question is regarding a definition of Tensor product of Hilbert spaces that I found in Wald's book on QFT in curved space time. Let's first get some notation straight. Let $(V,+,*)$ denote a set ...
4
votes
3answers
586 views

Direct Sum of Hilbert spaces

I am a physicist who is not that well-versed in mathematical rigour (a shame, I know! But I'm working on it.) In Wald's book on QFT in Curved spacetimes, I found the following definitions of the ...
1
vote
0answers
77 views

Periodic sequence with exponentially increasing period?

I have to develop a physical model for a certain type of biological oscillation that can be built upon periodic sequences. From earlier questions I know that any periodic sequence (containing $0$s ...
2
votes
3answers
771 views

Differences between symmetric, Hermitian, self-adjoint, and essentially self-adjoint operators

I am a physicist. I always heard physicists used the terminology "symmetric", "Hermitian", "self-adjoint", and "essentially self-adjoint" operators interchangeably. Actually what is the difference ...
0
votes
1answer
133 views

Mathematics for Statistical Mechanics

I am studying Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics from a book that i am not sure who has written it, because of its cover is not present. There is a section that i can not understand: ...
1
vote
0answers
45 views

Ascertaining a mathematical equality to derive a partition function

we have an equation like this: $$\mathcal N(x)=\sum_{q=1}^\infty (\psi(x,q) \log(q)) \qquad (1)$$ while $\psi(x)$ is the function for some oscillations (may contain complex part), $x\in \Bbb R$ and ...
3
votes
2answers
198 views

Finite velocity at infinite distance

If an object were launched exactly at escape velocity it would have zero velocity at infinity. But what if we launch an identical objects at greater than escape velocity? Apparently it will have a ...
1
vote
0answers
63 views

Applications of a certain wave equation in Physics? [closed]

I am doing research in the field of number theory and as part of this looking for correspondencies to other discilines and particularly physics. I am searching for examples in physics where the ...
2
votes
1answer
318 views

Eigenvectors of a 4D rotation, and their interpretation

Let us define a 4D rotation by using two unit quaternions: $$\mathring{q}_l=\frac{a+ib+jc+kd}{\left|a+ib+jc+kd\right|}$$ and $$\mathring{q}_r=\frac{e+ib+jc+kd}{\left|e+ib+jc+kd\right|}.$$ They differ ...
1
vote
4answers
234 views

How can the big bang occur mathematically?

As we know time began with the big bang. Before that there was no time, no laws, nothing. Mathematically how can an event take place when no time passes by? How did the big bang took place when there ...
8
votes
6answers
481 views

In coordinate-free relativity, how do we define a vector?

Relativity can be developed without coordinates: Laurent 1994 (SR), Winitzski 2007 (GR). I would normally define a vector by its transformation properties: it's something whose components change ...
3
votes
2answers
126 views

Expanding two-variable function $f(x,y)$ over the complete sets $\{ g_{i}(x) \}$ and $\{ h_{j}(y) \}$

Quite often (see, for example, this PDF, 50 KB) when discussing the Born-Oppenheimer approximation the following assertion is made: any well-behaved function of two independent variables $f(x,y)$ can ...
-3
votes
2answers
118 views

Why is $r'/r^2 = -1/r$? [closed]

If $r=r(t)$, why is $\frac{r'(t)}{(r(t))^2}$ = $\frac{1}{r(t)}$ where $'$ denotes the derivative? I saw it in a lecture. Can you please explain?
-2
votes
2answers
192 views

Is there any phenomenon in physics which is sensitive to irrational numbers?

We can measure only rational numbers by our scale. Here is an example where irrational numbers does makes sense. If so then this question may have some theoretical importance. Is irrational numbers ...
4
votes
1answer
147 views

Does nature tetrate?

We see addition, multiplication and exponentiation in the natural formulae that make up physics. However, do we ever see tetration (repeated exponentiation) or higher hyper-operators in nature? ...
5
votes
2answers
191 views

Integer physics

Are there interesting (aspects of) problems in modern physics that can be expressed solely in terms of integer numbers? Bonus points for quantum mechanics.
1
vote
1answer
155 views

Spin(n) group SO(n) relation

Is it correct to state that the elements of Spin(n) fulfill a Clifford algebra and that the Lie group generators of Spin(n) is given by the commutator of the elements? If not, then what is the ...
1
vote
2answers
127 views

Suggestions on a particular arXiv publication on math needed for theoretical physicists [closed]

I'm going to start my PhD in a year and I'll be taking a gap year doing other stuff. But I also wanted to fill in the gaps in my math knowledge and I came across an arXiv publication called ...
12
votes
1answer
910 views

Equation describing magnetic hysteresis

So when you're looking at B-H curves for ferromagnetic substances, you often see these magnetic hysteresis curves, which occur, I gather, largely because of domain formation which has some reversible ...
0
votes
1answer
185 views

Universal Sequence and relationship of mathematics and reality [closed]

In "The Special and General Theory of Relativity" Einstein says: How can it be that mathematics, being after all a product of human thought which is independent of experience, is so admirably ...
1
vote
2answers
189 views

Studying the logical structure of physics as a mathematical object per se? [closed]

I was wondering is there a branch of mathematical physics which studies the underlying logical structure of physics as a mathematical object per se? Let me explain what I mean by that. I'm ...
0
votes
1answer
200 views

Math for Thermodynamics Basics

I am studying Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics from a book that i am not sure who has written it, because of its cover is not present. There is a section that i can not understand: ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How deep can my knowledge of particle physics go without the maths?

Successfully just got my first question answered on here, and now time for the second. So I recently gained interest in particle physics and was wondering. By no means do I have the mathematical ...
2
votes
3answers
408 views

continuity of the electric potential due to a surface charge

The Electric potential due to a charge distribution on a surface is : $\Phi \left ( x \right )=\int \frac{\sigma \left ( {x^{}}' \right )dx{}'}{\left \| x-x{}' \right \|}da$ I want to show that it's ...
7
votes
3answers
656 views

What is a dual / cotangent space?

Dual spaces are home to bras in quantum mechanics; cotangent spaces are home to linear maps in the tensor formalism of general relativity. After taking courses in these two subjects, I've still never ...
1
vote
2answers
572 views

How much pure math should a physics/microelectronics person know [duplicate]

I do condensed matter physics modeling in my phd and I was struck up learning quite an amount of physics. But while having done lot of physics courses, I see that if I learn pure math I would ...
5
votes
2answers
201 views

Is there a physical motivation to study finite fields?

Clearly finite groups are of immense value in physics and these are also substructures of fields. However I never came across any computations involving finite fields at university and so I never ...
1
vote
1answer
162 views

Topology for physicists [duplicate]

Which are the best introductory books for topology, algebraic geometry, manifolds etc, needed for string theory?
4
votes
10answers
989 views

Is it possible for a physical object to have a irrational length?

Suppose I have a caliper that is infinitely precise. Also suppose that this caliper returns not a number, but rather whether the precise length is rational or irrational. If I were to use this ...
2
votes
1answer
162 views

Calculation of spherical Bessel functions - meaning of $\left(\frac{1}{x}\frac{d}{dx}\right)^{l}$

I'm trying to understand the calculation of spherical Bessel functions in chapter four of Griffiths' Introduction to Quantum Mechanics (2nd ed, p142). He gives ...
0
votes
2answers
674 views

Level of calculus required for physics [closed]

First time for me here so kindly let me know if I violate the rules - especially if this is a duplicate. After reading the page how to become a good theoretical phycist, I started a serious revision ...
3
votes
0answers
274 views

Interesting Math Topics Useful for Physics [closed]

What are some interesting, but less popular, math topics that are useful for physics that can be self-studied? Specifically, topics that might ultimately be useful in high energy theory (even if it is ...
2
votes
1answer
203 views

Impact of LHC on other science and technologies, in particular on mathematics?

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) "remains one of the largest and most complex experimental facilities ever built" (Wikipedia); it may even be the most complex project in humankind's history (?). Such ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

How should a theoretical physicist study maths? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How should a physics student study mathematics? If some-one wants to do research in string theory for example, Would the Nakahara Topology, geometry and physics book and ...
-4
votes
4answers
153 views

Is the mathematical truth 1+1=2 analogous to the conservation of energy? [closed]

They seem to express the same concept in different fields.
3
votes
2answers
328 views

(Co)homology of the universe

In this post let $U$ be the universe considered as a manifold. From what I gather we don't really have any firm evidence whether the universe is closed or open. The evidence seems to point towards it ...
1
vote
1answer
190 views

Potential for charge distribution, finiteness

Consider a potential for charge distribution: $$v_H(\mathbf{r}) ~=~ \int \frac{\rho(\mathbf{r'})}{|\mathbf{r}-\mathbf{r'}|}d\mathbf{r'}$$ where $\rho(\mathbf{r'})$ is the charge density. This ...
1
vote
0answers
87 views

Division algebras $(\mathbb{R,C,H,O})$ and discrete symmetry [closed]

I once saw a statement about the relation between division algebra(which means you can define a division in this algebra, there is a theorem saying we only have 4 kinds of division algebra, real R, ...
9
votes
6answers
866 views

Is physics rigorous in the mathematical sense?

I am a student studying Mathematics with no prior knowledge of Physics whatsoever except for very simple equations. I would like to ask, due to my experience with Mathematics: Is there a set of ...
13
votes
4answers
556 views

Does the axiom of choice appear to be “true” in the context of physics?

I have been wondering about the axiom of choice and how it relates to physics. In particular, I was wondering how many (if any) experimentally-verified physical theories require axiom of choice (or ...
4
votes
1answer
148 views

The use of Hall algebras in physics

I asked the same question in mo. I think maybe here there are more physics guys to help me. I once read a statement (not memorized precisely) that a certain physics quantity between two states of ...
7
votes
0answers
477 views

String theory from a mathematical point of view

I have a great interest in the area of string theory, but since I am more focused on mathematics, I was wondering if there is any book out there that covers mathematical aspects of string theory. I ...
3
votes
1answer
287 views

Mathematical definitions in string theory

Does anyone know of a book that has mathematical definitions of a string, a $p$-brane, a $D$-brane and other related topics. All the books I have looked at don't have a precise definition and this is ...
3
votes
0answers
218 views

Integrals given by Landau [closed]

Discussion about Landau's "Theoretical Minimum" has already been posted here. Unfortunately I couldn't find much about some examples of questions he gave to students. There are three questions in the ...
4
votes
2answers
364 views

Quantum Mechanics in terms of *-algebras

I'm currently trying to find my way into the geometric description of Quantum Mechanics. I therefor started reading: Geometry of state spaces. In: Entanglement and Decoherence (A. Buchleitner et ...
2
votes
3answers
450 views

Mathematics for Quantum Mechanics [duplicate]

What math should I study if I want to get a basic understanding of quantum mechanics and especially to be able to use the Schrodinger's equation.
5
votes
4answers
2k views

How do you do an integral involving the derivative of a delta function?

I got an integral in solving Schrodinger equation with delta function potential. It looks like $$\int \frac{y(x)}{x} \frac{\mathrm{d}\delta(x-x_0)}{\mathrm{d}x}$$ I'm trying to solve this by ...
2
votes
1answer
218 views

Why is physical space equivalent to $\mathbb{R}^3$?

Why is physical space equivalent to $\mathbb{R}^3$, as opposed to e.g. $\mathbb{Q}^3$? I am trying to understand what would be the logical reasons behind our assumption that our physical space is ...
5
votes
5answers
570 views

What is the meaning of following expresion $C=\frac{\delta Q}{dT}$ mathematicly

Our professor raised the following question during our lecture in Statistical Physics (even so it's related to Thermodynamics): Many text books (even wikipedia) writes wrong expressions (from ...
4
votes
2answers
331 views

Sum total distance of electrons on a spherical surface

What is the sum total distance between every possible pair of point charges when there are n point charges on a spherical surface? All point charges can only and are located on the infinitesimal ...