Path integral formulation (Due to Feynman) is a major formulation of Quantum Mechanics along with Matrix mechanics (Due to Heisenberg and Pauli), Wave Mechanics (Due to Schrodinger), and Variational Mechanics (Due to Dirac). DO NOT USE THIS TAG for line/contour integrals.

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Can someone explain how to do a functional integral through an example?

I want to learn how to do path integrals as used in quantum field theory. I understand the specific type of integral used in qft is called a functional integral. I looked at Wikipedia and checked in ...
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How do I solve this Gaussian path integral?

Suppose $$ Z = \int \mathcal D[\phi^*] \mathcal D[\phi] \exp(\phi^*A\phi + \phi B\phi) $$ where $A$ and $B$ are operators. I know how to solve a Gaussian path integral involving only $\phi^* A \phi$ ...
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limit as $x_1 \to x_0$, propagator for the harmonic oscillator

Consider a non-relativistic particle of mass $m$, moving along the $x$-axis in a potential $V(x) = m\omega^2x^2/2$. use path-integral methods to find the probability to find the particle between ...
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Uses for Action from Lagrangian Mechanics

In my course on Lagrangian/Hamiltonian mechanics I noticed that we dealt with finding the stationary point of the change in action $ \delta S $ and we were never really doing anything with $ S $ ...
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331 views

Mathematically, what is the kernel in path integral?

Mathematically, what is the kernel in path integral? At first, I thought that it is the kernel in the integral transform because when we use the (physical) kernel to transform the wave function (Eq ...
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0+0 self interacting QFT - $ e^{-\sin^2 x}$ type integral — Bessel function expansion around infinity

In a physics paper (here) I found this variant of the Bessel function of the first kind. $$ \tag{1} Z(g) ~=~ \frac{1}{\sqrt{g}} \int_{-\frac{\pi}{2}}^{\frac{\pi}{2}} e^{-\frac{1}{2g} \sin^2 x} \, dx ...
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Amplitude $\langle0|e^{-iHT}|0\rangle$ in A. Zee's QFT In A Nutshell

In his Quantum Field Theory In a Nutshell, in page 12, (Second Ed), A Zee says that conventionally, the amplitude $\langle0|e^{-iHT}|0\rangle$ is denoted by $Z$. In the next paragraph, he considers ...
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probability amplitude and path integrals [closed]

Recently, I have been learning about path integrals and I was wondering, can the probability of a certain path be weighted more in a path integral? Said in another way, can certain paths have more ...
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596 views

Plants and Quantum Mechanics!

So, I have been working on quantum biology and found something interesting that I would like to write an equation for: Scientists have wondered how plants have such a high efficiency in ...
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Path integral formulation for an optimization quantum mechanics problem

I have been working on a quantum mechanics problem I asked here and someone recommended to use path integrals. I learned about path integrals but I couldn't find out how to finding the most optimized ...
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Are unitarity and locality properties of quantum field theory somewhat capsuled in these propierties of the action?

Feynman path integral weighs all paths by a factor $e^{i\frac{S}{\hbar}}$, where $S=\int \! L \, \mathrm{d^4}x$ Two questions: Is relatedthe fact that the argument of the exponential is imaginary ...
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Klein-Gordon propagator integral in the light-like case

In Kerson Huang's Quantum Field Theory From Operators to Path Integrals (Amazon link), pages 28 and 29, he calculates the propagator in the following case: time-like, space-like and light-like. First ...
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How to work with singular gauge transformations in QFT [closed]

I was recently considering a problem analogous to the Aharonov-Bohm (AB) effect but in the context of quantum field theory. Consider then Dirac electrons minimally coupled to an AB flux and described ...
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438 views

What is a path integral? [closed]

I was reading about path integrals because someone told me about it in this question. I read some articles about path integrals but couldn't understand it. Can you please explain path integral for me? ...
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1answer
106 views

Least Action Principle (Classical and Quantum Theory)

I) My first question would be "why should classical systems obey the principle of least action ?" When we find out the propagator in quantum physics, we find the amplitude to be equal to the sum over ...
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What makes Lattice Yang-Mills hard?

I've been reading up on non-perturbative Yang-Mills, and have found the following equation: $$Z[\gamma, g^2, G]=\int \! \prod e^{-S}\mathrm{d}U_i$$ Now I don't know much about computational physics, ...
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Why every state evolving infinite time becomes the ground state in QFT?

For any state $|\phi \rangle $ evolving infinite time $$\lim\limits_{t\rightarrow \infty} e^{-iHt}|\phi\rangle=\lim\limits_{t\rightarrow \infty} e^{-iHt}|n\rangle\langle n|\phi\rangle$$ Let ...
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Minimization of a quaradic-like expression when calculating the generating functional for free Dirac field

The generating functional for a free Dirac field is $$Z_0[\eta,\bar{\eta}]=\int D\bar{\psi}D\psi \mathrm{exp}\{i\int [\bar{\psi}(x)S^{-1}\psi(x)+\bar{\eta}(x)\psi(x)+\bar{\psi}(x)\eta(x)]dx\}$$ where ...
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Heterotic Supersymmetric derivation of an integrality theorem for differentiable manifolds [closed]

Please consider the following integrality theorem for differentiable manifolds due to K H Mayer: I am trying to prove this theorem using Heterotic Super-symmetric Quantum Mechanics described by a ...
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207 views

Why isn't the path integral defined for non homotopic paths?

Context In the Aharonov Bohm effect, there is a solenoid which creates a magnetic field. Since the electron cannot be inside the solenoid, the configuration space is not simply connected. Question ...
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2answers
160 views

masslessness of Goldstone boson, Effective action, and functional-integral measure

I have difficulty in understanding the path-integral formalism of SSB, and that of Effective Action. Let's say a complex scalar field theory has the global $U(1)$ SSB, $$L(\phi)=(\partial^\mu ...
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160 views

Susy QM and Atiyah-Singer index theorem

Consider maps $t\mapsto x^i(t)$ from circle to some Riemannian (spin) manifold and lagrangian $$ \mathcal L = \frac12 g_{ij}(x) \partial_t x^i \partial_t x^j + \frac12 g_{ij} \psi^j \left(\delta^i_k ...
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48 views

What's the importance of background field gauge?

Recently I've read that background field gauge is very convenient for gauge theories, because it fixes the connection between normalization constants of gauge field and gauge coupling constant one. I ...
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Vacuum to vacuum transition amplitude using functional integral

The vacuum to vacuum transition amplitude for a free particle with source $J$ is given by $$Z_0[J]=\int D\phi \mathrm{exp}\{-i\int [\frac{1}{2}\phi(\square +m^2-i\epsilon)\phi-\phi J]d^4x\}$$ Let ...
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96 views

How does path integral formulation explain bound states?

It seems to me that the intuitive explanation of path integrals in quantum mechanics describes scattering processes only. You have a particle going from A to B and you compute the probability ...
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139 views

Renormalization, integrating out high momenta Wilson way

In equation $(12.5)$ in Peskin and Schroeder, they write out the generating function but leave out all quadratic terms of the form $\phi\hat{\phi}$ arguing that they vanish since Fourier ...
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Can anyone tell me what's this equation?

Can anyone tell me what's this equation?
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244 views

Semiclassical limit of Quantum Mechanics

I find myself often puzzled with the different definitions one gives to "semiclassical limits" in the context of quantum mechanics, in other words limits that eventually turn quantum mechanics into ...
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70 views

Can the diffraction/interference pattern behind the slit (double slit) be calculated with Feynman path integrals (QED)?

I often see Feynman path integrals explained by a graphic which shows the slit and then the electron goes all possible ways behind the slit. Ok that is nice to understand the Feynman path integral, ...
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35 views

Bound states and extensive field configurations

What are extensive field configurations in QFT (instantons, monopoles etc.)? What is the difference in description of their contribution in path integral value or in $n$-point operator functions ...
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Question about the foundation of part I in A. Zee's book

Zee says in Section I.3 of QFT in a nutshell: The functional integral $$Z = \int D \varphi e^{i \int d^4 x [\frac{1}{2} (\partial \varphi)^2 - V(\varphi) + J(x) \varphi (x)]} \tag{11} $$ is ...
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Ward identity derived from global symmetry and SDE, different from that derived from gauge symmetry?

In QED, according to Schwinger-Dyson equation $^{[1]}$, $$\left(\eta^{\mu\nu}(\partial ^2)-(1-\frac{1}{\xi})\partial^{\mu}\partial^{\nu}\right)\langle 0|\mathcal{T}A_{\nu}(x)...|0\rangle = e\,\langle ...
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Feynman's $i\epsilon$ prescription in path integrals (Mark Srednicki)

On page 63 in M.S. book , why m^(-1) goes to (1-iε)m^(-1) or m -> (1+iε)m and how can i verify eq.(7.3)? On page 63 writes : Looking at $H(P,Q)= \frac{1}{2m} P^2 +\frac{1}{2}mω^2Q^2$ we see that ...
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Evolution of harmonic oscillator in path integral formulation

The unnormalized ground state of the harmonic oscillator (choosing units such that $m = \hbar = \omega = 1)$ is $$\tag{1}\psi(q,t) = \exp(-q^2/2-it/2).$$ The transition function is ...
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Transition amplitudes by functional methods in QFT

I am following section 9.2 in Peskin and Schroeder in which the Feynman rules are derived for scalar fields. They define (in eqn (9.14), page 282) the transition amplitude from $\vert\phi_a\rangle$ ...
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Anomalies in QFT books

Why in most QFT books when author discusses of non-invariance of measure of path integral (massless fermions interact with gauge fields) $$ \int D\bar{\Psi} D\Psi \to |\Psi \to U\Psi , \quad ...
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Who developed the phase space path integral?

The original path integral introducted by Feynman is $$ \lim_{N\to +\infty} \int \left\{\prod_{n=1}^{N-1} \frac{\mathrm{d}q_n}{\sqrt{2 \pi i \hslash \varepsilon}} \right\} ...
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Dirac's remark that inspired Feynman when formulating path integral

When Feynman was trying to formulate path integral of quantum mechanics, he was inspired by Dirac's remark which roughly states that $e^{i\frac{S}{\hbar}}$corresponds to the transition amplitude, ...
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Propagators, path Integrals, transition amplitudes, Green's functions etc

I'm trying to make a simple conceptual map regarding some of the things in the title as they pertain to quantum mechanics and or quantum field theory, and I'm finding that I'm a little perplexed about ...
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Equations of motion with replacing the Lagrangian by irrep diagrams generating functional

I have read that equations of motion of ghosts is equal to $$ \tag 1 \frac{\delta \Gamma}{\delta \bar{c}^{a}(x)} = -\partial^{\mu}_{x}\frac{\delta \Gamma}{\delta K^{\mu , a}(x)}, $$ where $\Gamma = W ...
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Variational derivatives of strongly connected diagrams functional in gauge theory

Background In Jorge C. Romao's "Advanced Quantum Field Theory", at the end of page 218, Eq (6.266) reads: $$\tag{1} \left.\frac{\delta^{2}}{\delta \omega^{b}(y)\delta A_{\mu}^{c}(z)}\left[ ...
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Getting Slavnov-Taylor identity

Let's have generating functional in path integral form for gauge $SU(n)$ theory with interaction: $$ \tag 1 Z[J] = \int DB D\bar{\Psi}D\Psi D\bar{c}Dc e^{iS}. $$ Here $$ S = S_{YM}(B, \partial B) + ...
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Is there a method which quantizes non-abelian gauge theories without path integrals formalism?

In the most QFT books there is a method of quantization of non-abelian theories through path integral methods. But I want to learn also the other methods without using of this formalism. Does anyone ...
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234 views

Gaussian integral of a function with nonzero mean (generalizing Wick theorem)

From the wikipedia article, for a Gaussian integral of an analytic function we have that This is equivalent to the Wick theorem when f(x) is a polynomial. Now I'm trying to obtain a similar ...
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Expansion in Quantum Fluctuations of the Path Integral

In this post: Dimensionless Constants in Physics there is a discussion about dimensionful vs. dimensionless constants in physics. In the context of this discussion, I'm wondering about the ...
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Faddeev-Popov Ghosts

When quantizing Yang-Mills theory, we introduce the ghosts as a way to gauge-fix the path integral and make sure that we "count" only one contribution from each gauge-orbit of the gauge field ...
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232 views

S-Matrix Elements in Path Integral Formalism

I have a question related to the connection between the S-Matrix elements and the path integral formalism. In order to formulate the question, I will just work with a scalar field theory for ...
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Does the order of variables matter for a quantum Lagrangian in the path integral formula for quantum mechanics? [duplicate]

For a single particle or field, I can't see how the path-integral formulation depends on the order of terms in the Lagrangian. It seems that you integrate the classical Lagrangian to get the action on ...
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Quantum symmetries that are not classical symmetries

An anomaly is a symmetry of the classical action that fails to be a symmetry of the path integral, due to non-invariance of the path integral measure. Does it ever occur that the opposite thing ...
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Proof of Connected Diagrams

If $Z[J]$ is the generating functional for the path-integral, could any prove (or more reasonably, refer me to a proof) that $$W[J]\equiv\frac{\hbar}{i}\log\left(Z[J]\right)$$ "generates" only ...