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Questions tagged [time-evolution]

The quantum mechanical time evolution operator governs how observables and/or states evolve during finite time steps, and is always unitary. Use this tag for questions about the time evolution operator, or the different equations of motion in the Schrödinger/Heisenberg/Dirac pictures. For time-independent Hamiltonians, the time evolution operator is simply exp(-iHt).

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1answer
91 views

Energy Interpretation of Quantum Effective Action From Weinberg's “The Quantum Theory of Fields”

In section 16.3 of Weinberg, he attempts to prove that the effective potential energy $V(\phi)$ is equal to the minimum energy density of a state with field expectation value $\phi$. I am confused ...
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43 views

Hamiltonian flows and Heisenberg picture of Quantum Mechanics

I am a math bachelor student studying Quantum Mechanics and I was very briefly introduced to the Heisenberg picture. (Hence many of the following may be trivial) In particular what I know is that: ...
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0answers
27 views

Evolution of the propagator in the Interaction picture?

The evolution operator in the interaction picture is defined as $U_I=e^{iH_0t}e^{-iH_St}e^{-iH_0t}$ Where $H_S=H_0+V$ I am trying to find the evolution of the operator $U_I$. In literature it is ...
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1answer
30 views

Any method that can show the time evolution of a open many body system?

the master equation seems is a choice but this method seems only give a mean field result which can not show obviously the effect of specific interaction between particles. So, I am wondering is there ...
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6answers
1k views

State collapse in the Heisenberg picture

I've been studying quantum mechanics and quantum field theory for a few years now and one question continues to bother me. The Schrödinger picture allows for an evolving state, which evolves through ...
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0answers
41 views

When would an open system reach the steady state calculated from master equation?

From the master equation for density matrix, it seems that one can have steady state solution requiring the derivative of density matrix equals to zero, but I want to know whether a real open system ...
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34 views

Generically, why do we want to evolve states with unitary operators? [duplicate]

Why is it so important that operators that evolve states are unitary?
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31 views

What happens to the time evolution equations in canonical quantum gravity?

Many expositions on canonical quantum gravity start from a 3+1 type formalism, where spacetime is foliated along the time dimension. The Einstein equations then decompose into constraint equations on ...
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2answers
132 views

Why don't the oscillator coherent states disperse in time?

A Gaussian wavepacket is made of a continuum of frequencies (or energies) and stretches in time due to the phenomenon of dispersion: the different plane wave components with different frequencies ...
2
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2answers
115 views

What is the mathematical reasoning behind Schrodinger's equation preserving its normalization, with the evolution of time?

I am currently in high-school, currently working on a physics research on the normalization of the Schrodinger's equation. I was quite interested on how we can mathematically explain preservation of ...
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4answers
142 views

Understanding intuition behind time translation in classical mechanics

In V.Arnold book "Mathematical Methods of Classical Mechanics" he says that invariance with respect to the time for isolated systems means that "the laws of nature remain constant", i.e., if $\phi(t)$ ...
3
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1answer
83 views

Non-Hermitian Hamiltonian for electron conductance in electric field?

Electron conductance in a solid state is usually driven by electric field - making some direction of jumps more likely. It makes (e.g. Hubbard's) Hamiltonian no longer self-adjoint, how to simulate ...
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2answers
711 views

Do atomic orbitals “pulse” in time?

I understand that atomic orbitals are solutions to the time-independent Schrödinger equation, and that they are are analogous to standing waves ("stationary states"). However, even a standing ...
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1answer
57 views

Problem with understanding Time Evolution of a Quantum State [closed]

I was given the following task and I'm having some troubles with understanding a few things about it: There is given a system with Orthonormal basis $ |u_1 \rangle , |u_2 \rangle, |u_3 \rangle$ ...
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2answers
42 views

Wave function of a particle under $V(x)$ (QM)

Suppose I have a particle with mass $m$ and it's under potential of a certain $V(x)$. (NOT an infinite or finite potential well) Also given is the wave function at time $t=0$, $\psi(x,0)$. What is ...
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1answer
55 views

How to understand the kernel as a transition amplitude?

Consider the time evolution operator $U(t_f, t_i)$ that controls the evolution of a wave function according to $|\psi(t_f \rangle = U(t_f, t_i) | \psi(t_i) \rangle$. As I understand it, the Born ...
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0answers
49 views

Virtual terms in the Dyson series (time dependent perturbation theory)

Let the interaction evolution operator in the interaction picture be $$U_I(t,t_0)=T \exp \Big( -i \int_{t_0}^t dt_1 H_I(t_1) \Big) ,$$ where $T$ is the time order operator and $H_I=H-H_0$ is the ...
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45 views

Discrete time evolution in a non-Euclidean space?

The time independent schrödinger equation can be written as $$i\frac{\partial \psi}{ \partial t}=H\psi$$ if we consider the case of a 1D particle we can evolve it in time by discretising the ...
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0answers
84 views

Time-independent and time-dependent perturbation theory yield different results

First, here's the problem statement. Suppose you have an infinite square well of length $a$, where the box extend from $x=0$ to $x=a$. At $t=0$, you add a perturbation $H'$ of the form: \begin{...
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1answer
83 views

Is the Process of Projection of a Generic State Onto a Subspace Impossible? [closed]

I can define (in a standard way) the process of projection of a generic state onto the subspace $\mathcal{G}$ as a process that takes a generic state $|\psi\rangle$ of the Hilbert space $\mathcal{H}$ ...
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2answers
239 views

Baker-Campbell-Hausdorff (BCH) Formula for the Time Evolution Operator

In following Prof. Toyer's Computational Quantum Physics lecture notes, I came across the following: In computing the Schrödinger equation in real space, one can make a "split operator" Ansatz, for ...
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1answer
143 views

Derivative and logarithm of Dyson series

With \begin{align} {\cal T}\exp\left[-\frac{i}{\hbar}\int_0^tH(t')dt'\right] &= I - \frac{i}{\hbar} \int_{0}^{t} dt' H(t') + \left(-\frac{i}{\hbar}\right)^2 \frac{1}{2} \mathcal{T}\left(\int_{...
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2answers
678 views

Probabilities in non-stationary states

I'm confusing myself. Let's represent some state in the eigenbasis for Hydrogen: $$|\psi\rangle = \sum_{n,l,m}|n,l,m\rangle\langle n,l,m|\psi\rangle.$$ Now denote the initial state by $\psi(t=0)\...
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1answer
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Does Haags Theorem forbid Time-Evolution?

I didn't quite grasp the essence of Haags Theorem in the the way it is presented (for example on wikipedia), but the issue seems to be that if one wants to represent infinitely degrees of freedom ...
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67 views

Solving time evolution equations in Hamiltonian formalism

I have 4 time evolution equations and the Hamiltonian $H(X_{1},X_{2},P_{1},P_{2})$ that generates the time evolution depends on 4 canonical coordinates but I would like to solve the differential ...
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1answer
55 views

Time difference between all particles and waves [closed]

Since all elementary particles and waves were created simultaneously in the big-bang (t0) would there be any time difference between any interacting elementary particles and/or waves after t0? I'm ...
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1answer
97 views

Derivation of von Neumann Equation for Density Matrices

Consider an ensemble of systems where each system is in one of a set of states $|\alpha_i\rangle$, with proportions $w_i$, such that the density operator is $$ \hat{\rho} = \sum_i w_i |\alpha_i\...
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1answer
159 views

Time dependence of wave packets without eigenfunctions

In general, to obtain the time dependence of an arbitrary wave packet $\left| \phi(x)\right>$ in the Schödinger picture, we expand the wave packet in the energy eigenfunction basis $\left| \psi_n(x)...
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4answers
130 views

Why do wavefunctions for stationary states include $e^{-iEt/\hbar}$? [duplicate]

Stationary states are separable solutions with $\Psi(x, t)=\psi(x)e^{-iEt/\hbar}$. But why is that there? Griffiths (Section 2.1 Stationary states, equation 2.8) says that observables for these states ...
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0answers
64 views

Interaction picture: why the Hamiltonian describing the dynamic doesn't change with the same law as other observables?

First: what happens in a general change of picture? If I have the following equation: $$ A | x \rangle = | y \rangle .$$ To do a change of picture is to apply a unitary $U$ on all vectors of the ...
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2answers
152 views

Eigenkets in Interaction Picture

Let us consider a system. In Schrodinger picture, its Hamiltonian $H$ is given by $H = H_0 + V(t)$, where $H_0$ is the unperturbed Hamiltonian and $V(t)$ is the time-dependent perturbation. In ...
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1answer
41 views

What's the minimum condition for time evolution operator to be written as $U(t,t_0)=e^{-\frac{i}{\hbar} \int_{t_0}^t H(t') dt'}$?

Is $\frac{d }{dt} e^{H(t)}=H(t)' e^{H(t)}$ the minimum condition for time evolution operator to be written as $U(t,t_0)=e^{-\frac{i}{\hbar} \int_{t_0}^t H(t') dt'}$? Further, what's the minimum ...
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2answers
293 views

How does a Hamiltonian 'generate' a unitary?

I know that the unitary (propagator) is given by $$U=e^{iHt}\tag{1}.$$ But I actually never saw how a Hamiltonian translates into a unitary. For example when I consider a two-level rotation in a ...
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1answer
69 views

What people mean by “state evolving with the interacting/free theory”?

This is a quite basic question but I confess it is something I didn't get up to this point. When defining the Moller operators and hence the $\cal{S}$-matrix one usually considers "states $\Psi$ ...
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2answers
62 views

Are quantum mechanical orbits specified uniquely by a Hamiltonian and initial state?

EDIT: This is completely wrong, don't bother reading. Consider a finite dimensional quantum mechanical system, say an $N$-qubit system so that $\text{dim}(\mathcal{H})=2^{N}$. Let's prepare our ...
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1answer
48 views

Dependence of wave function with time, especially probability density function. And Continuity equation

I was learning Basic Quantum mechanics. I cam across the fluid equation in QM, which suggests $\Psi^*\Psi$ is probability density function. Consider the two statements below Probability will change ...
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2answers
529 views

General solution of states of time dependent Hamiltonian

Given a time dependent Hamiltonian which commutes at different times, we have the time evolution operator given by $$\mathcal{U}(t,0) = \text{exp}\bigg[-\bigg(\frac{i}{h}\bigg)\int_{0}^{t}dt' H(t')\...
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1answer
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How does time-translation symmetry morph into evolution in time?

I am reading Ballentine's textbook "Quantum Mechanics: A Modern Development". In it he transitions from discussing time-symmetry to discussing evolution (of the state) in time. I'm finding it ...
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2answers
67 views

Two ways to define wave function in Heisenberg picture

I found two ways to define a wave function in Heisenberg picture, $| \psi(t) \rangle_\mathrm{H}=\mathrm e^{\mathrm i H t/\hbar} | \psi(t) \rangle_\mathrm{S}$ which further gives $|\psi(t) \rangle_\...
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2answers
72 views

Are $\hat x$ and $\hat p$ assumed to be time-independent operators?

In the book Quantum Mechanics by Cohen-Tannoudji, at $G_{III}$, it is given that and then in the comment section, it is also given that so I'm pretty confused in here, because in one side, they say ...
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94 views

Time dependence of the momentum operator for a free particle

I was studying Modern Quantum Mechanics by Sakurai, and at the page 85, it is given the analysis of a free particle. There, the author assumes that Hamiltonian is $$\hat H = \frac{ \hat p ^2}{ 2m},$$...
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2answers
94 views

Does $i\hbar \frac{d \hat A }{d t} = [\hat A (t_0), \hat H]$ hold when $H$ is time-dependent, but $[H(t_0), H(t'_0)] = 0$?

It is known that - given in Sakurai, ch2.2, p83 - in Heisenberg's picture, for a Hamiltonian, $H$, independent of time, the time evolution of any operator $\hat A$ is given by $$i\hbar \frac{d \hat ...
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1answer
51 views

Example of time-dependent factorization of a Hilbert space

In these notes on entanglement in QFT it is pointed out that in the Heisenberg picture the factorization of a Hilbert space is time-dependent (pages 18 and 19): In the Schrödinger picture, it is ...
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53 views

Operators evolution

I have a little question about equation for creation/annihilation operators. Usually we obtain time evolution equation for these operators from Heisenberg equation. for example: $$\frac{da_l}{dt} = -...
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48 views

Calculating the evolution at any moment $t$ of a density matrix

I was reading the paper https://arxiv.org/abs/1303.4686, where we are given $N$ systems, all with the same Hamiltonian $$H=\sum_i \varepsilon_i \mid i\rangle\langle i\mid ~,$$ such that the joint ...
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1answer
279 views

Spin of a particle in uniform magnetic field along arbitrary direction

Suppose initially, at time $t=0$, a spin 1/2 particle is in the spin up state along some arbitrary direction in the XY plane, and given by $a(\hat{x} + \hat{y})$. Also, at time $t=0$, a uniform ...
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4answers
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Why can't two different quantum states evolve into the same final state?

Is it true that two different states cannot evolve into the same final state? Can they achieve this state at different times? If yes, what is the proof?
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1answer
116 views

Utility of the time-ordered exponential

Is the time-ordered exponential $$ \mathcal{T}\exp\left\{-i\int_{t_0}^tdt'V(t')\right\}\tag{1} $$ just a mnemonic device for the series $$ \begin{aligned} 1 + (-i)\int_{t_0}^tdt_1 \, V(t_1) +{} &...
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55 views

Time-dependent perturbation theory in a degenerate system

In the derivation of probability transition of time-dependent perturbation theory (see for example these notes, from Ben Simons from Cambridge University), I have only encountered treatments of non-...
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2answers
162 views

Time dependence of a function of an operator

Suppose I know the time evolution of an operator is given by $\dot{\hat{O}} = \frac{i}{\hbar}[\hat{H}(t), \hat{O}(t)]$. Now I want to look at a function $\hat{f}(\hat{O}$, and I want to know the time ...