This tag is for questions relating to what, if anything, the quantum mechanical formalism and experimental results say about the way the world works.

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Decoherence and interpretations

With quantum decoherence, are there still any "gaps" in our knowledge of quantum mechanics that hint (either in terms of the physics, philosophy, or otherwise) at the need for further interpretation? ...
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2answers
123 views

How does the Physics work for the Quantum Suicide thought experiment?

On page 5 of this paper written by Max Tegmark, Tegmark discusses a thought experiment called 'Quantum Suicide'. As far as I understand it, this experiment was created to show the experimental ...
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1answer
54 views

Many-worlds interpretation (MWI) and conservation of energy [duplicate]

I am not an expert of many-worlds interpretation (MWI), and what I say may be stated incorrectly. In that case i welcome corrections. If the MWI is true and it explains quantum theory and it splits ...
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2answers
100 views

Meaning of “realism” in quantum mechanics

When physicists doing work in quantum measurement, decoherence, Bells' inequalities etc. use the term "realism" what exactly do they mean? I'm looking for answers targeted towards, say, someone whose ...
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1answer
56 views

Does a particle “exist” between emission and detection?

In considering a simple Young's double slit setup: The classical idea that a particle must exist with defined position and momentum between the source and detection plate leads to philosophical ...
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0answers
59 views

How does one intrepret probabilites in the many-worlds interpretation?

Let's say I flip a coin, and don't look. From the copenhagen interpretation, the state of the coin is: $\frac1{\sqrt2}(i|\text{heads} \rangle - |\text{tails}\rangle)$ If I observe the coin, there is ...
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2answers
118 views

Can multiple timelines exist according to theoretical physics? [closed]

Multiple timelines is not a reality yet (as of 2016's science and technology), but exists only in Marvel/DC universe. It is something that is used to explain the paradox of time-travel. If you go back ...
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2answers
185 views

Many-world interpretation: simple physics explanation? [closed]

We went a little off topic in physics class today and my teacher was explaining how quantum physics explains the idea of parallel universes. She believes in a idea called many world interpretation ...
2
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3answers
129 views

Does valid interpretations of quantum mechanics always reduce to trivial arguments about the equations? [closed]

This is the editted 'short' version of the question :) Interpretation is very important in physics, but physics is governed by equations. With bare equations, physics would be just mathematics. ...
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1answer
118 views

What stands behind the quantum nonlocality appearing in entanglements, and why Bell's inequalities are violated?

I noticed the question whether Bell's inequalities are based on a false premise, (Could Bell's Theorem be based on a false premise?) but I bring another argumentation of the question. Also I ...
2
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0answers
77 views

What would be the abilities of a wave function collapsing oracle? [closed]

Although the Bell's theorem dismiss local hidden variables as an explanation of the quantum variability, there is nothing to prevent an observer to see the occurrence of a wave function collapse as ...
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0answers
36 views

Interaction picture perturbation [closed]

I habe given a hamiltonian $H_0$ (time independent) and an external potential $V$ (time dependent). Now I have to calculate the interaction picture perturbation. How do I do that? I am not quite sure ...
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1answer
58 views

Probabilistic realism

On consideration of Bell's inequalities and this Why is quantum entanglement considered to be an active link between particles?. Either localism or realism has to be given up. Can't we have a ...
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1answer
47 views

Does quantum mechanics separate ontology from gnoseology? [closed]

I mean this answer here. Laws present to us what we know (what we may know). But what we know cannot define what is real; it only defines our actions & assumptions. We may know only probabilities ...
5
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2answers
392 views

Is the many-worlds interpretation (MWI) of QM inconsistent with quantum field theory

I had recently posted a question on the Philosophy stack exchange about "true" randomness, and a lot of the discussion centered around Quantum Mechanics. One of the responders claimed: MWI has the ...
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1answer
84 views

Does “sum over all paths” in the path integral imply “sum over all paths” in momentum space when one Fourier-transforms?

How is the Fourier-transformed-field path integral interpreted? Is it still a "sum of all paths" in momentum space? Just that with another action? Consider for instance the (Euclidean) partition ...
1
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1answer
81 views

Many worlds probability of getting cancer [closed]

My understanding of probabilities in many worlds is following: If I would decide to start smoking and we know that 10% of smokers get cancer that means that in 10% of all worlds during my lifetime I ...
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2answers
71 views

Light interference single particle 4 slits experiment - what are interpretations apart from many-worlds interpretation?

Someone knowledgeable about physics advised me to read a book "David Deutsch: The Fabric of Reality, 1997". The book gives experiment like two-slit one, difference is that 2-slits compared to 4-slits ...
2
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1answer
121 views

Double slit experiment and pilot waves [closed]

Why do almost all books on quantum start out with the double slit experiment and show how a single particle interferes with itself and say its a wave and particle when Yves Couder has shown on a ...
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1answer
66 views

Bohmian trajectories vs. Feynman path integrals, continuous paths?

After reading some of the other posts online, I'm clear on the fact that Bohmian trajectories (of the de Broglie Bohm formulation) and the paths of the Feynman path integral formulation are very ...
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3answers
270 views

Can someone clarify whether the recent experiment closing all remaining loopholes to Bell's Theorem really shut the door on local realism for good?

I saw this recent article on Phys.org that purports to close all remaining loopholes that previous experiments on violations of Bell's inequality left open. My question is, does this really close the ...
0
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2answers
100 views

Physical quantities have definite values?

I don't really know if this question has an anwser but I thought it was worth to try asking. My point here is the following: in Quantum Mechanics, to describe the states of a system we use a Hilbert ...
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3answers
104 views

Has the double-slit experiment been performed with animals as the observers?

As the title says, has the double-slit experiment been performed with animals (not humans) as the observers? If yes, which animal was used and what was the result?
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1answer
60 views

Is contemporary physics interpreted in an instrumentalist way? [closed]

I'm a master student in theoretical physics and the reason why I choose this career is far more related to the "philosophical beauty" of physics, than to my personal ability or skills. This, in some ...
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4answers
229 views

Is quantum physics truly random or does it just appear that way because of Heisenberg uncertainty principle

The behavior of an electron (and other tiny things) is said to be probabilistic because we can't say where an election will be when we measure it, but only where it will probably be. As I understand ...
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1answer
81 views

Does the uncertainity principle actually attack determinism? [closed]

It's not really clear to me how does QM attacks determinism. It sure attacks computability, which is a component of newtonian, naive determinism, but it's often claimed to destroy determinism itself ...
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2answers
187 views

Does the following experiment disprove the Copenhagen interpretation?

I have a question concerning the scientific experiment proposed in the following video, (25:00-29:00) titled the "EPR Thought Experiment", which bears resemblance to the quantum eraser experiment. ...
3
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2answers
130 views

Where are the worlds in many-worlds interpretation?

What does it mean in MWI for other universes to exist? Are they in some sector of spacetime beyond our cosmic horizon or is it more complicated? I'm not asking this on Philosophy SE because people ...
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2answers
68 views

Terminology for “measurable” and “hidden” realms in quantum physics

Please excuse if some of my terminology is vague, the whole point of this question is to clarify terminology. In quantum physics, one frequently encounters situations where there are some kind of two ...
4
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1answer
101 views

In interpretations of QM where the wave function is real, what does that mean?

In a lot of interpretations of Quantum Mechanics they believe that the wave function is "real". But what does that mean? Are they saying that the wave function of an elementary particle ...
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2answers
70 views

In quantum mechanics does the truth/accuracy of a measurement really matter?

Once John Wheeler said "the past has no meaning or existence unless it exist as a record in the present". So, in a experiment of delayed choice entanglement swapping, if we used a faulty detector to ...
3
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4answers
131 views

What limits causality in the many-worlds interpretation (MWI)?

It's widely held that it's either very difficult or impossible to affect the outcomes of experiments in other branches of the many-worlds. The reason given is usually something along the lines that ...
2
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4answers
198 views

Does the Copenhagen interpretation require Nature to solve NP problems instantaneously? [closed]

Let's say we have a quantum computer with two registers taking in $m$ and $n$ qubits respectively, with $m$, $n$ suitably large. Let $f:\{0,1\}^m \rightarrow \{0,1\}^n$ be a one-way function. Set up ...
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3answers
233 views

In the oil droplet experiments that suggest de Broglie’s pilot wave theory might be accurate, what does the fluid surface correspond to?

As a particle travels to a screen, it is traveling through 3-dimensional space. In the oil droplet experiment, there are only two dimensions of any importance—the droplet merely moves along the ...
6
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3answers
214 views

How to understand the motion of a particle in Quantum Mechanics?

In Classical Mechanics when we talk about the motion of a particle it is the same as talking about the idea of trajectory. The fact is that in Classical Mechanics, a particle has a definite position ...
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0answers
50 views

A real 'two line' (non-interference pattern) when observed

I have seen many interference patterns from double slit experiments but I have never seen a real 'two line' pattern when observed. Does this actually exist or is it only a conclusion? if there is an ...
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0answers
97 views

Using the double slit experiment to prove or disprove the de Broglie-Bohm pilot wave theory

Probably a dumb question... If you have a double slit experiment with a second experiment (single or double slit) at 90 degrees intersecting the path of the first experiment, would the interference ...
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3answers
119 views

Does Bell's theorem exclude local hidden variables as explanation for radioactive decay?

Often it is said that Bell's theorem (and the observed violations thereof) rules out local hidden variable theories as the explanation for the seeming non-determinism found in quantum mechanics. I'm ...
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0answers
56 views

Can string theory and the Penrose interpretation coexist?

Is it possible for string theory to coexist with the Penrose interpretation of quantum mechanics? Does string theory require the many worlds interpretation?
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1answer
37 views

What trajectory do particles follow in the two-slit experiment in Bohm-de Broglie theory

In Bohm de Broglie interpretation of QM particles have trajectories; in the classic two-slit experiment what trajectories do they follow, and how is the interferance pattern interpreted? Are ...
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1answer
115 views

Does QFT prevent preparation of an entangled particle pair as in EPR experiment?

This is the claim Tommasini makes in Reality, Measurement and Locality in Quantum Field Theory:"Two spin $1/2$ particles, A and B, are created in coincidence in a spin-singlet state, and are detected ...
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0answers
24 views

Can the rate of branching in the many worlds interpretation be influenced?

If I understand correctly, in the many worlds interpretation, worlds branch when irreversible interactions occur, and that these interactions occur on very low-levels. Since they occur on such low ...
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2answers
662 views

What is the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum field theory?

I am most interested in interpretational differences due to the fact that quantum field theory is relativistic while quantum mechanics is not. By "Copenhagen interpretation" I mean a minimal ...
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1answer
54 views

Quantum force and classical limit

Today my physicist friend told me about Bohmian mechanics as an alternative way of looking at QM. He told me that in Bohmian mechanics the wave function gives rise to another fundamental force (the ...
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2answers
925 views

Which theory explains the path of a photon in Young's double-slit experiment?

In Young's double-slit experiment, we know that a photon goes through either one of the slits but we don't know which one, and it ends up on a screen. I want to know which theory can predict to the ...
4
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3answers
644 views

Why doesn't Many-Worlds interpretation talk about many worlds?

I was reading this interpretation from this site, where these lines are noteworthy enough to talk for the fact that this interpretation doesn't actually talk about many-worlds: These are the "many ...
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0answers
39 views

Mathematical formalism for the Many World's Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics

A short question: is there a mathematical formalism underlying the Many Worlds Interpretation, that is published in the literature, in much the same way, but on a presumably smaller scale, as String ...
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2answers
155 views

Does the many worlds interpretation eliminate the spooky action at a distance paradox? [closed]

I'm sorry if this is a stupid question. I'm a novice at physics. I have read the article about entanglement and EPR paradox. The spin of two particles is measured when they are very far apart, and ...
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1answer
60 views

Particle position and speed [duplicate]

If I understand correctly, particle is something at a point of time, where you can tell it's position, but what if particle is moving, then you can tell it's speed. From what I understand wave is NOT ...
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2answers
65 views

Spectral lines on a detector

How can it be possible for a single electron to go through 2 slits at the same time and create 2 spectral lines on a detector. What is wrong with that theory, but at the same time produce results as ...