Questions tagged [measurement-problem]

DO NOT USE THIS TAG just because your question involves measurements (either quantum or classical). The measurement problem asks how wave function collapse occurs during measurement in quantum mechanics, and how it can be reconciled with unitary evolution.

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107 views

If I want to measure an electron how would I do it?

If I look at the Electron to see it then a Photon must of hit the Electron. So I have no idea of what the Electron was doing before I looked at it. To find its position again I need to perform a ...
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Are results of "quantum eraser experiment" same both for particles moving at the speed of light and slower ones?

Recently I've encountered a video about the quantum eraser experiment. I was curious, if results of this experiment are the same for entangled particles moving with the speed of light and slower ones?
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Is it possible to use Bayesian method in improving the measuring conditions and accuracy of an electron's (or photon) momentum and position?

for you who need a definition for what a "Bayesian method" is, and as per wiki's easy definition. it's a method of statistical inference in which Bayes' theorem is used to update the probability for a ...
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Is the future set? [duplicate]

If we know the state of the universe at a certain point in time, is the future set? There have been quite a few similar questions on here and some of the answers were quite useful to me. But there is ...
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1answer
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Realtivity and the measurement problem

If a quantum system is prepared and the eigenvalues are known but the experimenter gets in a spaceship and rockets off in a particular direction at relativistic speeds and then performs the ...
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1answer
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Unitarily reversing a projective measurement

We start with a particle in a pure superposition state. Let's say it is, $$\vert\psi\rangle = \frac{1}{2}(\vert 0\rangle + \vert 1\rangle)$$ Alice sends this particle inside a box and the box ...
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1answer
52 views

Uncertainty and error in a measurement

I do not find a clear and simple explanation of the difference between uncertainty and error of a measurement. Basically, in a measurement, uncertainty is defined as the standard deviation of the ...
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6answers
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Isn't the detector always measuring, and thus always collapsing the state?

I have a radioactive particle in a box, prepared so as to initially be in a pure state $\psi_0 =1\ \theta_U+ 0\ \theta_D$ (U is Undecayed, D is Decayed). I put a Geiger counter in the box. Over ...
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Does measurement of quantum system always collapses the state of system?

Does measurement in quantum mechanics always disturb the system? The measurement postulate states that "when we do a measurement on a quantum system, the state of the system is collapsed to one of ...
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1answer
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Measurement postulate and black hole information paradox: are they related somehow?

The measurement postulate states that whenever we make a quantum measurement, we select (projection) from the general superposition state a single pure state. Thus, as a general quantum state is a ...
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How can Schrödinger's cat be both dead and alive? [closed]

So, this goes to something so fundamental, I can barely express it. The Schrödinger's Cat thought experiment ultimately asserts that, until the box is opened, the cat is both dead AND alive. Now, ...
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Entropy of measurements; is the Von Neumann entropy lying?

Pre-measurement Let $\left| \psi \right>$ be a pure state: $$ \left| \psi \right> = a \left| 0 \right> + b \left| 1 \right> $$ The density matrix of $\left| \psi \right>$ is: $$ \...
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Are all processes time/CPT-reversible, e.g. measurement, stimulated emission, state preparation, Big Bang?

"The CPT theorem says that CPT symmetry holds for all physical phenomena, or more precisely, that any Lorentz invariant local quantum field theory with a Hermitian Hamiltonian must have CPT symmetry." ...
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Penrose experiment

I just read about Penrose interpretation theory about the wave function collapse: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penrose_interpretation, which could be confirmed/infirmed by the following experiment: ...
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1answer
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Measuring small changes in length using the micrometer screw gauge

Which of the following method/instrument cannot be used to measure small changes of the order of a millimeter occurring in a length of about 50cm. 1)spherometer 2)travelling microscope 3)meter ...
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263 views

If the wavefunction is continuous how can the many-worlds be discrete?

Preamble for clarity: The many worlds interpretation is usually used to explain the measurement of a 2 level system ($|0\rangle$ or $|1\rangle$) as: $$\frac{1}{\sqrt{2}}(|0\rangle+|1\rangle)|\text{...
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What is in physical term meaning of penetration of a potential barrier?

While solving the quantum mechanical case of potential barrier meaning - $$\text{E} <\text{V} $$ The transmission coefficient is nonzero. My problem is what is happening with particle motion Has ...
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Are superpositions contagious?

Does quantum mechanics really predict that a particle prepared in a state of superposition of spin will result, after being measured by an appropriate instrument (Stern-Gerlach device), in a ...
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1answer
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Quantum mechanics limits to understanding the Universe [closed]

By definition, a wave function does not describe a particle's state exactly, we can only know that information when we make measurements and thus collapse the wave function. This gives us a lot of ...
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1answer
138 views

Can we craft a Hamiltonian such that the measurement is consistent with the discrete measurement taught in Quantum physics?

So the way I understand this, the way measurement is taught is that you have a wave function $\Psi(t)$. It's evolution over time is : $$i \hbar \frac{d}{d t}\vert\Psi(t)\rangle = \hat H(t)\vert\Psi(t)...
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In QM does the observer really perturb the system to make a measurement?

It is commonly taught in introductory QM courses that in order to get to know the position or momentum of a particle, be it by "sending a photon" or similar experiments, the measurement necessarily ...
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538 views

Is the Born rule indeed wrong?

This is a question about the validity of a preprint, arXiv:quant-ph/0509089, which claims that the "Copenhagen Interpretation of QM is incorrect" (same title, authored by Guang-Liang Li and Victor O.K....
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What is the simplest model of a quantum measurement on a 2 level system

What is the simplest physical system which can be used to model the quantum measurement of a 2 level system? For example, can the following, spin coupled to a harmonic bath, be used to model a ...
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135 views

Does observation in quantum theories always imply interaction (affecting quantum system with photons, electromagnetic fields, etc.)?

The term observation is obscure. As I see so far, observation is always done by means of affecting (!) the quantum system by some means - often photons or electromagnetic waves or whatever else. ...
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Measurement problem: Origin of probabilities in Many-Worlds Interpretation

As far as I can tell there appears to be an active group of academics (including the likes of Sean Carrol) who believe in the Many-Worlds Interpretation of quantum mechanics, but feel that the origin ...
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Can wave collapse during measurement be avoided with a better experiment / measurement apparatus?

Or to restate the question, does quantum mechanics or the quantum field theory state or imply that we can only observe the wave in a collapsed state? And if they don't, do we have any promising ...
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Why does the interaction with environment remove the basis ambiguity : decoherence theory

In decoherence theory, we try to remove the measurement postulate from Q.M to replace it by unitary evolutions. Consider a two level system $S$, an apparatus $A$ and the environment $E$. A first ...
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Is this decoherence?

I have a very basic understanting of decoherence (i.e. I,ve read the Wikipedia page), but I was recently reading Heisenberg's The Physical Principles of the Quantum Theory and I came across a thought ...
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1answer
319 views

Full Hilbert space of a particle

Given the Hilbert space $H$ of a single particle, we know we can write \begin{equation} H = H_{spatial}\otimes H_{other} \end{equation} where $H_{spatial}$ is spanned by the possible position states ...
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Why aren't particles constantly "measured" by the whole universe?

Let's say we are doing the double slit experiment with electrons. We get an interference pattern, and if we put detectors at slits, then we get two piles pattern because we measure electrons' ...
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3answers
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Why is wave-function collapse still being taught in quantum mechanics? [closed]

I don't really understand why wave-function collapse is still being taught while we seem to have better interpretations of QM available nowadays. During the early development of quantum mechanics the ...
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Conceptual understanding of operators in QM

Do operators in QM represent in some fashion the action of the measurement apparatus on a state being measured? Usually operators in QM are introduced as abstract transformations whose eigenvectors/...
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Is sole projection onto a subspace of a system associated with a quantum mechanical measurement?

I'm a little confused about a recent discussion, where a one dimensional wave-function $\Psi(x)$ was considered, associated with a state $$|\Psi\rangle = \int dx \, \Psi(x) |x\rangle .$$ Now ...
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2answers
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Doing Stern-Gerlach experiment without blocking the atoms in the $-x$ direction

In quantum mechanics, in general, it is stated that the act of measurement changes the state of the system. For example, consider the following Stern-Gerlach setup; A beam of silver atoms first passes ...
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1answer
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Is is possible to have a pair commuting observables only in a single direction?

In quantum mechanics, for two observables to be compatible, successive measurements of the observables, say $A$ and $B$, should yield the same result as earlier, i.e if we do the measurements with the ...
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2answers
280 views

What’s a measurement qualifier in the double-slit experiment

In the double-slit experiment why does the light hitting the back screen not result in a measurement? How far away from the slit can the measurement take place and still cause a wave collapse and is ...
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1answer
190 views

Simultaneous measurements in Quantum Mechanics

In the notes I am using, it states that if two observables A and B are measured simultaneously, then the measurement of A does not affect the measurement of B, and vice versa. However, why does the ...
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1answer
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Does the Hermitian Operator Reduce the Non-eigenstate State to the Self-Eigenstate?

Let's consider $\left| \Psi \right> $ some state of quantum system. Let's also consider some Hermitian Operator $\hat{Q}$, with the discrete specrum: $$ \hat{Q}\left| Q_n \right> = Q_n\left| ...
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473 views

Finding an energy of a particle in an infinite potential well

This question arises from a discussion I recently had with my friend. We were talking about a particle in an infinite potential well. The particle is in an arbitrary wavefunction $\Psi$. When one ...
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Difference between Wavefunction collapse and throw of dice

It might be a really stupid question and I think I am trivializing it. I am not able the understand the big issue with collapse of wave function. So we have set of probabilities and when you measure ...
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1answer
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The common wavefunction and annihilation of 1 photon [closed]

QM says that if we have many particles they have a common wavefunction. Also QM says that when you measure a particle or observe it, you collapse its wavefunction. That must be a logical mistake. Now ...
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Time evolution of stationary states [closed]

Let's say we have a state $ \phi=\sum_i c_i \phi_i $ where the $ \phi_i $ denote energy eigen vectors with non degenerate eigen values. Now if a measurement of the energy is done this state ...
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Heisenberg choice of the observables and different outcomes [duplicate]

Somebody could help me to clarify how its possible that different choices of the observable to measure can lead to different outcomes of the observed system state?
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1answer
106 views

The many world interpretation and immortality [closed]

This question might not be appropriate as it is philosophical on a similar level as the Schrödinger's cat thought experiment. In any case it might be interesting to think about it nonetheless. The ...
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3answers
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What constitutes measuring in the double slit experiment? [duplicate]

In the double slit experiment attempting to measure which slit the particle passed through causes the wave function to collapse. According to the question: What is the quantum mechanical definition ...
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316 views

Decoherence: faster than light?

The answer to this question suggest that one can solve the measurement problem by decoherence. If I understand it correctly the decoherence appears when the quantum state interacts with the ...
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Would every particle in the universe not have some form of measurement occurring at any given time? [duplicate]

I know this is probably a common point of confusion, but I have a specific question about measurements in Quantum Mechanics. I read an explanation on this, but still have a point of confusion. The ...
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163 views

Is there a quantum analogue of Mean Value Theorem theorem?

Background I was thinking of Mean Value Theorem in the context of classical mechanics I have $2$ points $A$ and $B$ and my particle goes from $A$ to $B$ then I know the velocity of the particle at a ...
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237 views

Does Von Neumann entropy fail to account for projective quantum measurements?

I'm trying to understand if this line of reasoning is correct: For a two-state pure quantum system $\left|\psi \right\rangle=\frac{1}{\sqrt{2}} (\left|0 \right\rangle+\left|1 \right\rangle)$, The ...
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1answer
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Measuring change in magnitude of electric current due to change in conducting material characteristics

I am new to this community and hence may not be aware of all the rules. Please do let me know if you think I am violating any. I will try to get it corrected. I am trying to get an answer to the ...

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