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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How to calculate ground state wave function?

I have seen many ground state wave functions. From where are they derived? How can one calculate them? Where can one find a list of all ground state wavefunctions discovered?
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Potential step and its transmission / reflection

Lets say we have a potential step with regions 1 with zero potential $W_p\!=\!0$ (this is a free particle) and region 2 with potential $W_p$. Wave functions in this case are: \begin{align} ...
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Vector representation of wavefunction in quantum mechanics?

I am new to quantum mechanics, and I just studied some parts of "wave mechanics" version of quantum mechanics. But I heard that wavefunction can be represented as vector in Hilbert space. In my eye, ...
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Why the hydrogen radial wave function is real?

Why the hydrogen radial wave function is real? Is it a coincidence?
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195 views

How does one find the wave velocity and the phase speed?

While I was studying beats, I tried to find a displacement function of any particle in the most generalized form. I ended up with $$y=2A\sin(\pi(t-x/v)(f_1+f_2))\cos(\pi(t-x/v)(f_1-f_2)).$$ Now, ...
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601 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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156 views

Why does the wave description say that probability oscillates, while the phase interpretation says constant amplitude?

The wave description of a particle illustrates an oscillating probability of the particle being found in any point in space. When a particle travels, it carries along with it a phase that oscillates ...
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Absolute value sign when normalizing a wave function

I have solved the following problem from Griffiths "Introduction to Quantum Mechanics". Consider the wavefunction: $\Psi (x,t) = A e^{-\lambda |x|} e^{-i\omega t} $ Normalize $\Psi$. Now, we ...
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normalizing a wavefunction

I have a homework problem that I can't get started on, below is the first bit. I feel like I should just be able to integrate to find $C$ but I get a divergent integral. Can someone give me a hint as ...
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648 views

Finite, square, potential well

Lets say we have a finite square well symetric around $y$ axis (picture below). I know how and why general solutions to the second order ODE (stationary Schrödinger equation) are as follows for ...
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Is there anything to prevent paired-up neutrons from a complete overlap

The reason "neutrons don't overlap", as DarenW explained it, has to do with intricate forces at play that take into account the spins, iso-spins and symmetry of the wavefunctions. However, assume I ...
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Why is the Horizontal Force Constant in Deriving the One Dimensional Wave Equation

My textbook in deriving the wave equation for a one dimensional elastic string stated that the horizontal direction force is constant.I understand that the horizontal components of the tensions on ...
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Question about the linearity of wave functions

For piece-wise constant potential, the potential energy is constant so the time dependent wave function can take the form $\psi(x,t)=C_1e^{i(kx- \omega t)}+C_2e^{i(-kx-\omega t)}$ where ...
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Where is a particle bound in a delta potential?

I can picture a bound state in a harmonic oscillator, or in an infinite square well, but where is a particle bound in a delta potential?
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Young experiment: square of classical real wave function

I can't understand why the sum of two real waves result in a time dependent wave, but not so for the complex waves. In details, I can't get this passage on p.38-39 in A.C. Phillips, Introduction to ...
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Solving the time independent Schrodinger equation: Does a complex solution make sense?

In my notes, I have the Time Independent Schrodinger equation for a free particle $$\frac{\partial^2 \psi}{\partial x^2}+\frac{p^2}{\hbar^2}\psi=0\tag1$$ The solution to this is given, in my notes, ...
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Wavefunction restrictions of odd potentials

So I was just reading back through Griffiths' "Introduction to Quantum Mechanics" and solving some of the problems for practice. There is a nice one (problem 2.1c for those playing at home) where you ...
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What does it mean for something to be a ket?

Ok so I will provide the following example, which I am choosing at random from Sabio et al(2010): $$\psi(r,\phi)~=~\left[ \begin{array}{c} A_1r\sin(\theta-\phi)\\ ...
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What is the relation between position and momentum wavefunctions in quantum physics?

I have read in a couple of places that $\psi(p)$ and $\psi(q)$ are Fourier transforms of one another (e.g. Penrose). But isn't a Fourier transform simply a decomposition of a function into a sum or ...
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920 views

Wave function and Dirac bra-ket notation

Would anyone be able to explain the difference, technically, between wave function notation for quantum systems e.g. $\psi=\psi(x)$ and Dirac bra-ket vector notation? How do you get from one to the ...
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Cylindrical wave

I know that a wave dependent of the radius (cylindrical symmetry), has a good a approximations as $$u(r,t)=\frac{a}{\sqrt{r}}[f(x-vt)+f(x+vt)]$$ when $r$ is big. I would like to know how to deduce ...
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195 views

Once I have the eigenvalues and the eigenvectors, how do I find the eigenfunctions?

I am using Mathematica to construct a matrix for the Hamiltonian of some system. I have built this matrix already, and I have found the eigenvalues and the eigenvectors, I am uncertain if what I did ...
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In Dirac notation, what do the subscripts represent? (Solution for particle in a box in mind)

So the set of solutions for the particle in a box is given by $$\psi_n(x) = \sqrt{\frac{2}{L}}\sin(\frac{n\pi x}{L}).$$ In Dirac notation $<\psi_i|\psi_j>=\delta_{ij}$ assuming $|\psi_i>$ ...
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Normalisation factor $\psi_0$ for wave function $\psi = \psi_0 \sin(kx-\omega t)$

I know that if I integrate probabilitlity $|\psi|^2$ over a whole volume $V$ I am supposed to get 1. This equation describes this. $$\int \limits^{}_{V} \left|\psi \right|^2 \, \textrm{d} V = 1\\$$ ...
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Amplitude of Probability amplitude. Which one is it?

QM begins with a Born's rule which states that probability $P$ is equal to a modulus square of probability amplitude $\psi$: $$P = \left|\psi\right|^2.$$ If I write down a wave function like this ...
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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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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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Probability and probability amplitude [duplicate]

What made scientists believe that we should calculate probability $P$ as the $P = \left|\psi\right|^2$ in quantum mechanics? Was it the double slit experiment? How? Is there anywhere in the ...
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436 views

Expectation values-Wavefunction

I'm a bit puzzled about an excercise in which I have to find the expectation values for position and momentum. Normally this should be pretty easy but in this case I just don't get the point. ...
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Tip of a spreading wave-packet: asymptotics beyond all orders of a saddle point expansion

This is a technical question coming from mapping of an unrelated problem onto dynamics of a non-relativistic massive particle in 1+1 dimensions. This issue is with asymptotics dominated by a term ...
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Meaning of $\int \phi^\dagger \hat A \psi \:\mathrm dx$

While analysing a problem in quantum Mechanics, I realized that I don't fully understand the physical meanings of certain integrals. I have been interpreting: $\int \phi^\dagger \hat A \psi ...
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Is this interpretation of $\psi=\frac{1}{\sqrt{\pi a^{3}}}e^{-r/a}$ correct?

Apologies if this is stating the obvious, but I'm a non-physicist trying to understand Griffiths' discussion of the hydrogen atom in chapter 4 of Introduction to Quantum Mechanics. The wave equation ...
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What does the quantum state of a system tell us about itself?

In quantum mechanics, quantum state refers to the state of a quantum system. A quantum state is given as a vector in a vector space, called the state vector. The state vector theoretically ...
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Non-Degeneracy of Eigenvalues of Number Operator for Simple Harmonic Oscillator [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Proof that the One-Dimensional Simple Harmonic Oscillator is Non-Degenerate? I'm trying to convince myself that the eigenvalues $n$ of the number operator ...
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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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What's the physical significance of the inner product of two wave functions in quantum region?

I am a reading a book for beginners of the quantum mechanics. In one section, the author shows the inner product of two wave functions $\langle\alpha\vert\beta\rangle$. I am wondering what's the ...
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Interpretation of $e|\psi|^2$ as electron density

In solid state physics the electron density is often equated to $e|\psi|^2$. However, the Sakurai says (Chapter 2.4, Interpretation of the Wave Function, p. 101) that adopting such a view leads "to ...
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Speed of a particle in quantum mechanics: phase velocity vs. group velocity

Given that one usually defines two different velocities for a wave, these being the phase velocity and the group velocity, I was asking their meaning for the associated particle in quantum mechanics. ...
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How is wavefunction probability redistributed after partial wavefunction collapse?

Suppose I set up the double-slit experiment using photons as my particle. Behind the left slit I place a beam splitter that points some of the light off in the direction of a camera (represented as ...
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Wavefunction collapse and gravity

If gravity can be thought of as both a wave (the gravitational wave, as predicted to exist by Albert Einstein and certain calculations) and a particle (the graviton), would it make sense to apply ...
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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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476 views

Meaning of instantaneous probability densities in time dependent wavefunctions

For a time dependent wavefunction, are the instantaneous probability densities meaningful? (The question applies for instances or more generally short lengths of time that are not multiples of the ...
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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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Measurement and uncertainty principle in QM

The Wikipedia says on the page for the uncertainty principle: Mathematically, the uncertainty relation between position and momentum arises because the expressions of the wave function in the two ...
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Wave function of Hydrogen Atom [closed]

Wavefunction of a Hydrogen atom is expressed in eigenfunctions as: $$\psi(\boldsymbol r,t=0)=1/\sqrt{14}(2\psi_{100}(\boldsymbol r)-3\psi_{200}(\boldsymbol r)+\psi_{322}(\boldsymbol r) ).$$ Is ...
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Schrödinger function: Separable wave function with even potential function of x

I have done the Problem 2.1 in Griffiths' quantum mechanics, and it seems not making sense to me. What if the wave function isn't symmetric at all? Then obviously the proof doesn't work. The ...
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Quantum Mechanics - The Normalization of $\psi_{3,1,1}$

Show that the hydrogen atomic wavefunction $\psi_{3,1,1}$ is normalized, and that it is orthogonal to $\psi_{3,1,−1}$. I'm not sure if I'm supposed to consider the radial part. I can show that ...
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How to compute the expectation value $\langle x^2 \rangle$ in quantum mechanics?

$$\langle x^2 \rangle = \int_{-\infty}^\infty x^2 |\psi(x)|^2 \text d x$$ What is the meaning of $|\psi(x)|^2$? Does that just mean one has to multiply the wave function with itself?
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If superposition is possible in QM, why do we often assume systems are already in their eigenstates?

My understanding is that an arbitrary quantum-mechanical wavefunction can be written as a linear combination of eigenfunctions of some Hermitian operator, most commonly the Hamiltonian; when a ...
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What does superposition mean in quantum mechanics?

What does superposition mean in quantum mechanics? When I say $A+B=C$ (forces). I can mean push something with force $A$ + force $B$ together, and that is same as I push it with force $C$. But when ...