# Questions tagged [commutator]

A mathematical construct quantifying the difference in effect of applying two operators in two alternate successions. It is the defining product of a Lie algebra, the efficient underlying description of Lie groups, of use in several areas of physics, most notably quantum field theory.

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### Fock space with mixed anti-commutation/commutation relations?

Let's say we have two modes, with the following labeling of occupation number states: $\lvert \Psi \rangle = \begin{pmatrix} 0,0 \\ 0,1 \\ 1,0 \\ 1,1 \end{pmatrix}$ An example of (what I assume to ...
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### Euclidean QFT commutator vanishes for all spacetime separations?

In Minkowski spacetime, the commutator of the Klein-Gordon field operator with itself at different spacetime points evaluates to the advanced minus retarded Green's function of the classical theory, ...
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### Find $\hat{x}$ operator given $\hat{p}$ operator

This is problem $1.2$ of Molecular Quantum Mechanics by Atkins, 4th edition. I'm given the momentum operator $$p=\sqrt{\frac{\hbar}{2m}}(A+B)$$ with $$[A,B]=1$$ and I need to find $x$ in this ...
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### Geometric interpretation of the second Bianchi identity?

Assuming a torsion free Christoffel symbol, the covariant derivative can be shown to satisfy the second (differential) Bianchi identity: \begin{equation} [[\nabla_a,\nabla_b],\nabla_c]+[[\nabla_c,\...
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### Heisenberg picture of QM as a result of Hamilton formalism

Consider the formula for the total time-derivative of a physical value in Poisson's formalism: $$\tag{1} \frac{dA}{dt} = -\{H, A\}_{P.B.} + \frac{\partial A}{\partial t},$$ where $\{A, B\}_{P.B.}$ is ...
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### Proof for commutator relation $[\hat{H},\hat{a}] = - \hbar \omega \hat{a}$

I know how to derive below equations found on wikipedia and have done it myselt too: \begin{align} \hat{H} &= \hbar \omega \left(\hat{a}^\dagger\hat{a} + \frac{1}{2}\right)\\ \hat{H} &= \...
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### Is uncertainty principle a technical difficulty in measurement? [duplicate]

Is the uncertainty principle a technical difficulty in measurement or is it an intrinsic concept in quantum mechanics irrelevant of any measurement? Everyone knows the thought experiment of measuring ...
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### What physical significance has the Heisenberg Group?

I read that the canonical commutation relation between momentum and position can be seen as the Lie Algebra of the Heisenberg group. While I get why the commutation relations of momentum and momentum, ...
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### If Poisson Bracket of Momentum and Position is non-zero, why no Uncertainty Principle?

In Hamiltonian classical mechanics, we have that the Poisson bracket of position and momentum satisfies $$\{q_i, p_j\} = \delta_{ij}$$ But this implies that momentum and position 'generate' changes ...
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### Glauber's Formula

In the Cohen-Tannoudji Quantum Physics book, Complement BII, says: [...] two operators $A$ and $B$ with both commute with their commutator. An argument modeled on the preceding one shows that, if we ...
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### Schrödinger field operators and their commutation relations

I've got several questions regarding the so called second quantization of the Schrödinger equation. My professor introduced the field operators for the Schrödinger field by simply stating them as ...
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### Do we need to expand the potential in a power series to show $[x, V(x)] = 0$?

Today in class (Intro to QM) we went over a couple of commutators. Among them was $[x, V]$, where $V=V(x)$ is a potential. What the teacher said to prove this is zero was: let's assume $V$ is analytic ...
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### Can non-central hamiltonians commute with $\vec{L}^2$?

Central potentials $V(r)$ trivially commute with the operator $\vec{L}^2$ in quantum mechanics because the latter is a function of the angular coordinates $(\theta,\phi)$ only. Non-central potentials, ...
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### Measuring non-commuting observable at once

Given an Hilbert space $H$ (finite dimensional for sake of clarity), and two non-commuting operators $$A = \sum_a a |a\rangle\langle a|$$ and $$B=\sum_a b |b\rangle\langle b|,$$ is it possible to find ...
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### Source of Ladder Operators

This might be a silly question but I am curious as to where the ladder operators in quantum mechanics come from. For example, in introductory texts on quantum mechanics, they try to solve the ...
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### The implication of anti-commutation relations in quantum mechanics

All the textbooks I saw are very clear about the implications of commutating operators in quantum mechanics. However, much less is said about anti-commutation relations. Does it have a general ...
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### Virasoro operators commutation relations [closed]

For the commutation relation in quantising the bosonic string $$\left[L_n,L_{m}\right]=(n-m)L_{n+m}+\frac{D}{12}n(n^2-1)\delta_{n+m,0}$$ we can then calculate this for $m=-n$ in between the vacuum ...
In Peskin and Schroeder pg. 27-28, they discuss Klein-Gordon theory and causality. For a spacelike separation $(x-y)^2 < 0$, they show that $$\langle 0| \phi(x)\phi(y) |0\rangle \neq 0$$ They go ...