A complex scalar field that describes a quantum mechanical system. The square of the modulus of the wave function gives the probability of the system to be found in a particular state.

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Transmission and reflection

What is the transmission amplitude of a wavefunction $\phi(x)=e^{ikx}(\tanh x -ik)$? I would have thought that it is $\tanh x -ik$ since this is the factor associated with the forward travelling ...
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Functionals of quantum states in QFT

Almost every book and article I can think of represents states of QFT using the Heisenberg picture of Hilbert space vectors, but Visser in "Lorentzian wormholes" does mention that you can also ...
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How do I figure out the probability of finding a particle between two barriers?

Given a delta function $\alpha\delta(x+a)$ and an infinite energy potential barrier at $[0,\infty)$, calculate the scattered state, calculate the probability of reflection as a function of ...
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Why do wave packets spread out over time?

Why do wave functions spread out over time? Where in the math does quantum mechanics state this? As far as I've seen, the waves are not required to spread, and what does this mean if they do?
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227 views

Text interpretation in Griffith's intro to QM

It says in Griffith's chapter 2.1, that: $$\tag{2.14} \Psi(x,t)~=~\sum_{n=1}^{\infty}c_n\,\psi_n(x) e^{(-iE_n t/\hbar)}$$ It so happens that every solution to the (time-dependent) Schrodinger ...
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Sinusoidal Wave Displacement Function

I am learning about waves (intro course) and as I was studying Wave Functions, I got a little confused. The book claims that the wave function of a sinusoidal wave moving in the $+x$ direction is ...
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273 views

How do I integrate $\frac{1}{\Psi}\frac{\partial \Psi}{\partial x} = Cx$

How do I integrate the following? $$\frac{1}{\Psi}\frac{\partial \Psi}{\partial x} = Cx$$ where $C$ is a constant. I'm supposed to get a Gaussian function out of the above by integrating but don't ...
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376 views

What is the rationale behind representing a state function by a complex valued function in QM?

What is the rationale behind representing a state function of an electron with a complex valued function $\Psi$. If only the probabilistic argument was required then why not represent it with just a ...
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227 views

States and observables in quantum mechanics

I'm beginning learn quantum mechanics. As I understand, state is a map $\phi$ from $L^2(\mathbb R)$ such that $|\phi|^2$ describes probability density of a particle's position. By integrating ...
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Matter waves and de Broglie wave length

The wavelength of a particle of momentum p is calculated using De Broglie relation. The de Broglie relation was postulated for what is called a matter waves. Now according to the statistical ...
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5answers
302 views

wave superposition of electrons and quarks

Is quantum wave superposition of electrons and quarks possible? If not, can different types of elementary particles be mixed in wave superposition?
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Double slit experiment and single particles. Is the wave function just a mathematical model?

I really do want to apologize in advance, I know this question has been 'answered' before. I have this 'problem' of feeling negatively toward much of today's 'mystical' interpretations of physics, ...
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146 views

Is $v(p)\exp(ipx)$ really the positron wave function?

In many textbooks the negative energy solution of the Dirac equation is quoted as describing the positron. Actually I don't understand this. For me $v(p)\exp(ipx)$ is the wave function of an electron ...
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257 views

Interpretation of de Broglie wave

Until what point can the de Broglie wave be thought as a real wave? I mean, is it made of something? What amplitude does it have? Is it a sine wave? How can it be related to the wavefunction of the ...
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1answer
116 views

Confused over the presence of 2 expressions for $\Psi(x,t)$

I'm following Griffiths' Introduction to Quantum Mechanics, and I see that he's got 2 different expressions for $\Psi(x,t)$. One of them is ...
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1k views

Probability current

Conservation of probability: Suppose a wavefunction has ${\partial \mathbb P \over \partial t} = -t f(x,t)$ and ${\partial j \over \partial x} = i f(x,t)$. How does it follow that ${\partial \mathbb P ...
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152 views

Wave function not normalizable

Does the solution of the Schrodinger equation always have to be normalizable? By normalizable I mean, given a wavefunction $\psi(x)$ $$\int_{-\infty}^{\infty}|\psi(x)|^2 dx<\infty \qquad ...
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2answers
147 views

Does Schrödinger equation have dual-property with Heat equation?

I have experimental data that Schödinger equation maintains high frequencies, while heat equation low. Does Schrödinger equation have some duality property with heat equation?
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199 views

Orbital of Hydrogen molecule

does anybody here know an analytical approximation of the bonding hydrogen orbital MOLECULE? I am looking for a good approximation to this orbital, that might be in some textbooks to get an ...
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633 views

Solving a time independent Schrödinger equation with a given potential

I'm trying to rework this old homework problem, and I am having problems arriving at the same solution on the answer sheet: Let $$V(x)=\begin{cases}\infty &\text{ if } x < 0\\ ...
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205 views

What does the notation $|x_1,x_2\rangle$ mean?

I would like clarification on an equation in the paper "Free matter wave packet teleportation via cold-molecule dynamics", L. Fisch and G. Kurizki, Europhysics Letters 75 (2006), pp. 847-853, DOI: ...
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4answers
195 views

Why do we consider the evolution (usually in time) of a wave function?

Why do we consider evolution of a wave function and why is the evolution parameter taken as time, in QM. If we look at a simple wave function $\psi(x,t) = e^{kx - \omega t}$, $x$ is a point in ...
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190 views

Why don't cancelling wavefunctions for two different particles give zero total wavefunction?

Let $\left|a\right>=e^{i(kx-\omega t)}$, $\left|b\right>=-e^{i(kx-\omega t)}$ be two neutral particles in the 1D free space without any interaction. Then ...
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485 views

Can we impose a boundary condition on the derivative of the wavefunction through the physical assumptions?

Consider the Schrödinger equation for a particle in one dimension, where we have at least one boundary in the system (say the boundary is at $x=0$ and we are solving for $x>0$). Sometimes we want ...
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102 views

I am learning Quantum Mechanics and I have some questions about some basic concept [closed]

What does a "STATE" exactly mean in quantum mechanics? What is the equivalence of "STATE" in classical mechanics? If we have a wave function $\Psi$ , its absolute square $|\Psi|^2$ is the ...
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Logic of the 'imaginary wave function collapse' argument in Double Slit experiment

My question is in regards to the stance that the 'wave function collapse' is not an actual physical occurrence. That is, you are not, by observation, changing the particles position from a wave to a ...
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49 views

Free particle Schrödinger Equation

Some sources give the free-particle solution to Schrödinger equation as $$\psi(x,t) =Ae^{i(kx-\omega t)} + Be^{-i(kx+\omega t)}$$ while some sources give it as $$\psi(x,t) =Ae^{i(kx-\omega t)}$$ ...
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110 views

Two ways of calculating the expectation value of momentum

The expectation value of momentum is given by: $$ \langle p\rangle = \int_{-\infty}^{\infty}\psi^{*}(x)\left(-i\hbar\frac{\partial}{\partial x}\right)\psi(x)dx $$ How can I show that the above ...
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112 views

Spin state of electron after measurement

I have a system of two spin 1/2 particles in a superposition of spin states in the z-direction given by: $\psi = \frac{1}{2} |+ +\rangle + \frac{1}{2} |+ -\rangle + \frac{1}{\sqrt{2}} |- -\rangle$ ...
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400 views

Wave function collapse

When we try to measure the position of a system, wavefunction collapses to form a spike. After a while, the wavefunction spreads again, and you take another measurement, the results will be different" ...
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645 views

Wavefunction as a combination of two stationary states - how to find those states?

Lets say we have a particle in a infinite square well which has a wavefunction like this ($A$ is some constant and $d$ is the width of the well): \begin{align} A\left[ \sin \left(\frac{2 \pi ...
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639 views

Hydrogen wave function in momentum space

We can seperate the wave function of an hydrogen atom in a radial and an angle part: $$ \phi_{n,l,m} (\mathbf{r}) = R_{n,l,m}(r) Y_{l,m}(\vartheta,\varphi) \, , $$ where $Y_{l,m}$ are the spherical ...
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549 views

Why does a plane wave have definite momentum?

Apologies if this is a little vague. It might not have a good answer. Given the interpretation of $|\psi(x)|^2$ as a probability distribution it's unsurprising that a wave function that is ...
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85 views

In the expansion of the scattered wave function, why do these two functions have the same index?

See Griffiths Quantum Mechanics, eq. 11.21. Evidently, $$\psi(r,\theta,\phi)=Ae^{ikz}+A\sum\limits_{l,m}^{\infty}C_{l,m}h_{l}(kr)Y_{l}^{m}(\theta,\phi).$$ But I don't see why the $l$th Hankel function ...
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232 views

Does quantum mechanics predict instantaneous action at a distance even without entanglement?

The suggestion that quantum mechanics implies that instantaneous action at a distance occurs is normally based on the contention that this follows from the entanglement of particles that share a ...
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476 views

How do I solve these integrals of wave function and operator?

First integral $$\int \Psi^*({\bf r},t)\hat {\bf p} \Psi({\bf r},t)\, d^3r,$$ where the $\Psi({\bf r},t)=e^{i({\bf k}\cdot{\bf r}-\omega t)}\,\,\,$ and $\hat {\bf p}=-i\hbar \nabla$. Second one ...
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Superposition of wavefunctions

Suppose you have 2 normalized wavefunctions $\psi_1=Ne^{iax}e^{if(x)}e^{i\omega t}$ and $\psi_2=Ne^{-iax}e^{if(x)}e^{i\omega t}$ defined on $x\in [-x_0,x_0]$ and vanishes for $|x|>x_0$. What then ...
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1answer
485 views

Simple rotation of an atomic orbital wavefunction

We know that an atomic orbital wavefunction may be written in terms of polar coordinates, $$\psi (r, \theta, \phi) = R(r) A(\theta, \phi)$$ where $R(r)$ is the radial component and $A(\theta, \phi)$ ...
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64 views

Does the wave function of a particle completely describe the state of the particle?

In classical mechanics, if you know the position and momentum of a particle at time $t$ and the Hamiltonian, you can predict the particle's position and momentum at any time. In quantum mechanics, if ...
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259 views

Calculating the most probable radius for an electron of a hydrogen atom in the ground state

This link describes a method for determining the most probable radius of an electron for a Hydrogen atom in the ground state. It states that : The radial probability density for the hydrogen ...
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2answers
63 views

Entropy before and after collapse of the wavefunction/ and interpretation?

Seems like it might be pretty rudimentary but I want to see if my thinking is on the right track as well as what the result means. The question is, is the entropy of the collapse of a wavefunction or ...
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1answer
96 views

Three dimensional wave packets in momentum space

I am given the 3D wave packet: $$\psi(x,y,z)=N\,\exp\left(\frac{-(x^2+y^2+2z^2)}{2a^2}\right).$$ I was asked to find N (easy enough). Then I was asked the probability that we measure $z$ greater than ...
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66 views

Transition from coordinate space to momentum space for SHO

I am given that the ground state of the SHO in position space is given as $$\langle q|\psi_0\rangle=\frac{1}{a^{\frac12}\pi^{\frac14}}e^{-q/4a^2}$$ Where a is a constant with units of length. I am ...
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2answers
256 views

Solving quantum radial equation for infinite potential spherical annulus for $l=0$

There is a mass $m$ in a potential such that $$ V(r) = \left\{ \begin{array}{lr} 0, & a \leq r \leq b\\ \infty, & \text{everywhere else} \end{array} \right. $$ ...
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105 views

Product of position eigenvectors at different times

I've been thinking about this, and it might sound like a stupid question, but I can't seem to find an answer anywhere, here goes: Whenever we calculate expecation-values between two position ...
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872 views

Overlap integral and probability

I have a question regarding how to extract probability from an overlap integral. Specifically, I am calculating the probability of a particle in a bound state in a delta potential $V=-\alpha ...
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2answers
135 views

Workaround to fermion sign problem?

My (rather incomplete) understanding of the NP-hard fermion/numerical sign problem is that it occurs when attempting to converge on a wavefunction for many-body fermion systems (for example, a small ...
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1answer
320 views

A Simple Explanation for the Schrödinger Equation and Model of Atom? [closed]

I tried reading the Wikipedia article to no avail - I simply cannot understand the Schrödinger Equation (what does each of the variables mean, especially the wave function), and the Schrödinger Model ...
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Decomposition of this wave function in eigenfunctions

I have this wave function of a system on a central potential: $V(r)$: $$\Phi(x,y,z)=C(x+y+z)e^{-\alpha r^2}.$$ And I'm asked a few things about probabilities. I don't have problems with that, because ...
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1answer
191 views

Harmonic oscillator - wavefunctions

I understand now how I can derive the lowest energy state $W_0 = \tfrac{1}{2}\hbar \omega$ of the quantum harmonic oscillator (HO) using the ladder operators. What is the easiest way to now derive ...