Linked Questions

5
votes
1answer
3k views

Hamiltonian Noether's theorem in classical mechanics [duplicate]

How does one think about, and apply, Noether's theorem in the classical mechanical Hamiltonian formalism? From the Lagrangian perspective, Noether's theorem (in 1-D) states that the quantity $$\sum_{...
62
votes
5answers
7k views

Is the converse of Noether's first theorem true: Every conservation law has a symmetry?

Noether's (first) theorem states that any differentiable symmetry of the action of a physical system has a corresponding conservation law. Is the converse true: Any conservation law of a physical ...
49
votes
6answers
14k views

What symmetry causes the Runge-Lenz vector to be conserved?

Noether's theorem relates symmetries to conserved quantities. For a central potential $V \propto \frac{1}{r}$, the Laplace-Runge-Lenz vector is conserved. What is the symmetry associated with the ...
24
votes
4answers
6k views

Galilean invariance of Lagrangian for non-relativistic free point particle?

In QFT, the Lagrangian density is explicitly constructed to be Lorentz-invariant from the beginning. However the Lagrangian $$L = \frac{1}{2} mv^2$$ for a non-relativistic free point particle is ...
21
votes
5answers
2k views

What symmetries would cause conservation of acceleration?

I have recently been trying to see what consequences Noether's theorem would have if our world was setup with different symmetries. It is a quite elegant result that the invariance of the Lagrangian ...
37
votes
1answer
4k views

Do an action and its Euler-Lagrange equations have the same symmetries?

Assume a certain action $S$ with certain symmetries, from which according to the Lagrangian formalism, the equations of motion (EOM) of the system are the corresponding Euler-Lagrange equations. Can ...
16
votes
5answers
1k views

Hamiltonian for relativistic free particle is zero

One possible Lagrangian for a point particle moving in (possibly curved) spacetime is $$L = -m \sqrt{-g_{\mu\nu} \dot{x}^\mu \dot{x}^\nu},$$ where a dot is a derivative with respect to a parameter $\...
18
votes
4answers
4k views

If all conserved quantities of a system are known, can they be explained by symmetries?

If a system has $N$ degrees of freedom (DOF) and therefore $N$ independent1 conserved quantities integrals of motion, can continuous symmetries with a total of $N$ parameters be found that deliver ...
17
votes
2answers
5k views

Invariance of Lagrangian in Noether's theorem

Often in textbooks Noether's theorem is stated with the assumption that the Lagrangian needs to be invariant $\delta L=0$. However, given a lagrangian $L$, we know that the Lagrangians $\alpha L$ (...
23
votes
2answers
4k views

Why does the classical Noether charge become the quantum symmetry generator?

It is often said that the classical charge $Q$ becomes the quantum generator $X$ after quantization. Indeed this is certainly the case for simple examples of energy and momentum. But why should this ...
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Conserved charges and generators

For the Klein Gordon field, the conserved charge for translation in space is given by: $$\vec{P}=\frac{1}{2}\int d^{3}k \, \vec{k}\{a^{\dagger}_{k}a_{k}+a_{k}a^{\dagger}_{k}\}$$ If we were to find ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Why is the Lagrangian approach preferred over the Hamiltonian approach in QFT? [duplicate]

Going from non-relativistic quantum mechanics(QM) to QFT there is a marked change in the approach used. QM almost exclusively uses Hamiltonains. Lagrangian based methods like the path-integrals are ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Why do the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formulations give the same conserved quantities for the same symmetries?

The connection between symmetries and conservation laws can be viewed through the lens of both Lagrangian and Hamiltonian mechanics. In the Lagrangian picture we have Noether's theorem. In the ...
8
votes
2answers
568 views

Why are symmetries in phase space generated by functions that leave the Hamiltonian invariant?

Hamilton's equation reads $$ \frac{d}{dt} F = \{ F,H\} \, .$$ In words this means that $H$ acts on $T$ via the natural phase space product (the Poisson bracket) and the result is the correct time ...
5
votes
3answers
333 views

What does a symmetry that changes the Lagrangian by a total derivative do to the Hamiltonian $H$?

A tiny symmetry transformation may change the Lagrangian $L$ by a total time derivative of some function $f$. This is a basic fact used in the proof of Noether's theorem. How can we see the effect of ...

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