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This tag is for Heisenberg quantum mechanical uncertainty principle.

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Physical Significance of Fourier Transform and Uncertainty Relationships

What is the physical significance of a fourier transform? I am interested in knowing exactly how it works when crossing over from momentum space to co ordinate space and also how we arrive at the ...
1
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1answer
777 views

Uncertainty relation and Energy-Position interference

How would you prove that the simultaneous measurements of position and energy are not subject to interference? I was thinking in calculate the commutation relation between $x$ and $H$ (Because $\Delta ...
2
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1answer
499 views

Why shouldn't the uncertainty principle be interpreted as an observer effect?

The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle suggests that the more precisely the position of a particle is measured, the less precisely its momentum can be known, and vice versa. $$\sigma_x \sigma_p \geq ...
6
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1answer
462 views

Is there any uncertainty between mass and proper length or time?

I was trying to naively draw a parallel between special relativity and the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. I try to understand uncertainty principle as a consequence of 4-position and 4-momentum ...
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2answers
445 views

Showing that position times momentum and energy times time have the same dimensions

I've been asked to show that both the position-momentum uncertainty principle and the energy-time uncertainty principle have the same units. I've never see a question of this type, so am I allowed to ...
1
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1answer
234 views

Semiconductors and localization of the electrons

When looking at the band diagram of a semi-conductor, direct conclusion of the invariance under discrete translations, for a filled state with an electron, one does know precisely it's momentum, so my ...
2
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1answer
3k views

Application of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle

I've the following application of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle. If a beam of particles in localised in the $x$-direction by a long slit, what is the uncertainty in position? Firstly, I ...
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2answers
515 views

Was uncertainty principle inferred by Fourier analysis?

I would like to know: did Heisenberg chance upon his Uncertainty Principle by performing Fourier analysis of wavepackets, after assuming that electrons can be treated as wavepackets?
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2answers
614 views

A thought experiment with Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Could the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle turn out to be false? Thought Experiment Ponder, for a moment, if I had a cube with 10cm sides which I'll name The Box. By ...
8
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2answers
717 views

Conjugate Variables, Noether's Theorem and QM

What is the underlying reason that the same pairs of conjugate variables (e.g. energy & time, momentum & position) are related in Noether's theorem (e.g. time symmetry implies energy ...
3
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1answer
202 views

In QM, does random data “come from anywhere”? Also, what are the properties of the data?

I have only taken a basic quantum mechanics course (this book, so you know where I'm coming from), but I've been wondering about something. If we set up a quantum system in a known state and take a ...
12
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1answer
335 views

Quantum uncertainty of particle falling in black hole

A stationary observer at infinity sees a particle of mass m falling in a supermassive Schwarzschild black hole. He observes an increasing redshift and sees the particle ceasing to progress when it ...
0
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1answer
149 views

What's the proper way to approximate the position uncertainty of a particle?

In this problem: shouldn't $\Delta x\sim\lambda/\sin\theta$ be $$\Delta x\sim \frac{\lambda}{\sin\theta} - \left(\frac{-\lambda}{\sin\theta}\right) = 2\frac{\lambda}{\sin\theta}$$ instead such ...
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3answers
403 views

An electron falling into a black hole

If an electron falls into a black hole. How can the Heisenberg uncertainty principle hold? The electron has fallen into the singularity now so it has a well defined position which means that it ...
6
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4answers
475 views

Does uncertainty imply noncommutativity?

We already know that non-commutativity of observables leads to uncertainty in quantum mechanics cf. e.g. this and this Phys.SE post. What about the opposite: Does uncertainty imply noncommutativity? ...
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6answers
1k views

What constitutes an observation/measurement in QM?

Fundamental notions of QM have to do with observation, a major example being The Uncertainty Principle. What is the technical definition of an observation/measurement? If I look at a QM system, it ...
4
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4answers
649 views

Uncertainty Principle for Information?

I'm not familiar (yet) on how Information theory can be emerged/used in QM/QFT but I was thinking about this question: While we have Heisenberg uncertainty principle on measuring coupled observables, ...
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3answers
233 views

Zero Point Fluctuations

The total energy of a mode in a quantum mechanical resonator is given by $E_n ~=~ (n+ 1/2)hf$ where $n$ is the number of modes. So when there are no modes or vibrations, i.e. $n=0$, the energy is ...
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0answers
112 views

Naive Uncertainty principle for string theory

Is it possible, in some sense, that a naive uncertainly principle for string theory could be expressed as : $$ \Delta x_i \Delta p_j \Delta \sigma ~=~ \delta_{ij} \hbar \ell_s$$ where $\ell_s$ is ...
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2answers
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Minimum possible Kinetic Energy of a confined electron

The problem is this: Consider an electron confined in a region of nuclear dimensions (about 5 fm). Find its minimum possible kinetic energy in MeV. Treat this problem as one-dimensional, and ...
2
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3answers
629 views

Energy-time uncertainty and pair creation

Usually, the energy-time analogue of the position-momentum uncertainty relation is quoted as $\Delta E \Delta t \geq \frac{h}{4 \pi}$. This has interpretational issues and such. But, with a suitable ...
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2answers
741 views

The Heisenberg uncertainty principle: Interpreting $\Delta p$, $\Delta t$, etc

(1) I have a textbook question that states the following: An electron has a speed of 500 m/s with an accuracy of 0.004%. Calculate the certainty with which we can locate the position of the ...
2
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1answer
192 views

Proof of quantum mechanical position uncertainty

How can you prove the uncertainty for position is: $$\Delta{x} =\sqrt{\langle x^2\rangle-\langle x\rangle^2}$$ $\Delta{x}$, taken to be the root mean square of x. $$\Delta{x} =\sqrt{\langle ...
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4answers
938 views

What is the meaning of uncertainty in Heisenberg's uncertainty principle?

The Heisenberg's uncertainty principle states the following: $$\Delta p \cdot \Delta x \ge \frac{h}{4\pi}.$$ While studying for my high school physics exams, I fooled myself into believing that I ...
4
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3answers
675 views

Creation of particle anti-particle pairs

I was reading some QFT notes and there is one point that I don't understand, they are justifying why we need QFT saying that the number of particles is not preserved once we consider special ...
2
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1answer
159 views

Quantum mechanics and Couder experiments

Couder experiments ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=W9yWv5dqSKk and https://hekla.ipgp.fr/IMG/pdf/Couder-Fort_PRL_2006.pdf), published in 2006, state that by dropping ...
3
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2answers
365 views

Hamiltonian of oscillators quantized proof

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0BxrBcN1-BZWUOXNxR1l4S0l2MjQ http://www.2shared.com/complete/Qjy1_uzp/Quantum_Mechanics_in_Simple_Ma.html (I uploaded a pdf file that contains the parts of the ...
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3answers
4k views

Proof of Canonical Commutation Relation (CCR)

I am not sure how $QP-PQ =i\hbar$ where $P$ represent momentum and $Q$ represent position. $Q$ and $P$ are matrices. The question would be, how can $Q$ and $P$ be formulated as a matrix? Also, what is ...
3
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2answers
278 views

Why does $i ( LK-KL )$ represent a real quantity?

According to my textbook, it says that $i( LK-KL )$ represents a real quantity when $K$ and $L$ represent a real quantity. $K$ and $L$ are matrices. It says that this is because of basic rules. ...
5
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2answers
226 views

How does QM allow imaging of individual electron orbitals?

Question: Why does the uncertainty principle allow probing of characteristics specific to the electron orbital distribution? If you measure an electron's position/momentum, then after you measure ...
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5answers
2k views

Reason for the Gaussian wave packet spreading

I have recently read how the Gaussian wave packet spreads while propagating. see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wave_packet#Gaussian_wavepackets_in_quantum_mechanics Though I understand the ...
5
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1answer
278 views

Relativistic contraction for a wave packet and uncertainty on momentum

Consider an electron described by a wave packet of extension $\Delta x$ for experimentalist A in the lab. Now assume experimentalist B is flying at a very high speed with regard to A and observes the ...
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3answers
894 views

Observation of violation of the uncertainty principle?

I stumbled upon this piece of news in the BBC's website http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-19489385, discussing this paper http://prl.aps.org/abstract/PRL/v109/i10/e100404, which reports ...
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1answer
565 views

Does Heisenberg's energy-time uncertainty principle imply that quantum computing is no more efficient than classical computing?

See http://arxiv.org/abs/quant-ph/0006080v1 "On Non Efficiency of Quantum Computer", by Robert Alicki. In this paper, the author argues using Heisenberg's energy-time uncertainty principle, that ...
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1answer
174 views

uncertainty principle of spin in (super)string theory

In quantum mechanics, uncertainty principle states that we can only measure the quantity of spin in one axis but not others. Then what about in superstring theory? As quantum mechanics is basically ...
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4answers
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Why is the Heisenberg uncertainty principle stated the way it is?

I spent a long time being confused by the Heisenberg uncertainty principle in my quantum chemistry class. It is frequently stated that the "position and momentum of a particle cannot be ...
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4answers
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Does the uncertainty principle apply to photons?

Wikipedia claims the following: More generally, the normal concept of a Schrödinger probability wave function cannot be applied to photons. Being massless, they cannot be localized without being ...
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3answers
891 views

Is it the act of measuring a quantum particle that causes it to lose its uncertainty?

I have designed an experiment. Without going into detail it resolves around the double slit quantum eraser experiments. If we can infer the location of a particle without actually measuring it, does ...
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1answer
125 views

Determining the spin of wavefunction

We all know that by uncertainty principle, location of a wave-particle is perfectly determined when uncertainty of momentum becomes infinite. (I also heard that in reality, it is almost impossible to ...
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1answer
546 views

Photons and uncertainty principle

Let's assume we have a perfect single-photon source: a device emitting exactly one photon at a time, with defined energy and direction. Let's shoot a photon: we know exactly the position of the photon ...
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6answers
657 views

What would be likely to completely stop a subatomic particle assuming it was possible?

Suppose that completely stopping a subatomic particle, such as an electron, could happen under certain conditions. What would be likely ways to get an electron to be perfectly still, or even just stop ...
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12answers
3k views

Could the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle turn out to be false?

While investigating the EPR Paradox, it seems like only two options are given, when there could be a third that is not mentioned - Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle being given up. The setup is this ...
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2answers
399 views

Where does the “borrowed energy” come from in Alpha decay?

I was also thinking about the uncertainty principle in regards with energy & time. The question of something like: Alpha tunneling out of the nucleus is where this can be invoked, but having an ...
0
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1answer
447 views

Applying uncertainty principle and the difference in $\Delta x$

These two questions seem to be very similar, but the textbook uses a bit different methods for calculating $\Delta x$ of uncertainty principle. Question A) Suppose that there is a room with the same ...
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1answer
298 views

electrons in an atom and uncertainty principle

Electrons in an atom have quantized energy quantity. Can uncertainty principle be applied in this case, then? How does this work? As energy is fixed, this seems to disobey $\Delta E \Delta t \geq ...
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1answer
522 views

Momentum in quantum mechanics

In quantum mechanics, we can have some superposition of matter waves that have different wavelengths. If then, can't momentum of a particle change every time measurement takes place? Or should I ...
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1answer
311 views

EPR paradox and uncertainty principle

In Wikipedia article EPR paradox, The original paper purports to describe what must happen to "two systems I and II, which we permit to interact ...", and, after some time, "we suppose that there ...
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1answer
502 views

wavefunction collapse and uncertainty principle

We all know that wavefunction collapse when it is observed. Uncertainty principle states that $\sigma_x \sigma_p \geq \frac {\hbar}{2}$. When wavefunction collapse, doesn't $\sigma_x$ become $0$?, as ...
2
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1answer
228 views

How do you determine the degree of localization of a wavefunction?

Suppose that there is a wavefunction $\Psi (x,0)$ where 0 is referring to $t$. Let us also say that $a(k) = \frac{C\alpha}{\sqrt{\pi}}\exp(-\alpha^2k^2)$ is the spectral contents (spectral amplitudes) ...
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2answers
455 views

Why is $\Delta x \Delta k \approx 1$ in any pulse?

In my physics textbook, it says that for any pulse, if $\Delta x$ becomes smaller, $\Delta k$ becomes larger where $k$ refers to $2\pi/\lambda$ and $x$ is x-axis displacement, as described by $\Delta ...