Quantum Mechanics on Phase Space

Quantum Mechanics on Phase Space

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In this monograph, we shall present a new mathematical formulation of quantum theory, clarify a number of discrepancies within the prior formulation of quantum theory, give new applications to experiments in physics, and extend the realm of application of quantum theory well beyond physics. Here, we motivate this new formulation and sketch how it developed. Since the publication of Dirac's famous book on quantum mechanics [Dirac, 1930] and von Neumann's classic text on the mathematical foundations of quantum mechanics two years later [von Neumann, 1932], there have appeared a number of lines of development, the intent of each being to enrich quantum theory by extra- polating or even modifying the original basic structure. These lines of development have seemed to go in different directions, the major directions of which are identified here: First is the introduction of group theoretical methods [Weyl, 1928; Wigner, 1931] with the natural extension to coherent state theory [Klauder and Sudarshan, 1968; Peremolov, 1971]. The call for an axiomatic approach to physics [Hilbert, 1900; Sixth Problem] led to the development of quantum logic [Mackey, 1963; Jauch, 1968; Varadarajan, 1968, 1970; Piron, 1976; Beltrametti & Cassinelli, 1981], to the creation of the operational approach [Ludwig, 1983-85, 1985; Davies, 1976] with its application to quantum communication theory [Helstrom, 1976; Holevo, 1982), and to the development of the C* approach [Emch, 1972]. An approach through stochastic differential equations ("stochastic mechanics") was developed [Nelson, 1964, 1966, 1967].
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Product details

  • Hardback | 672 pages
  • 155 x 235 x 36.58mm | 2,510g
  • Dordrecht, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1996 ed.
  • XVI, 672 p.
  • 0792337948
  • 9780792337942

Table of contents

Preface. I: Basic quantum theory and the necessity for its revision. I.1. Classical mechanics of particles and fluids. I.2. Structure of a physical model: state, property (observable), measurement. I.3. Quantum mechanics of a (non-relativistic spinless) particle. I.4. On the connection between classical mechanics and quantum mechanics. I.5. Mathematical appendix. II: Basic experiments suggest generalizing quantum mechanics. II.1. Quantum mechanical descriptions of an experiment. II.2. Capture on a screen, in a bubble chamber, gel, cloud chamber. II.3. The Stern-Gerlach experiment. II.4. Crossed polarizers. II.5. Single slit experiments and inapplicability of Heisenberg uncertainty relations. II.6. Spontaneous decay, Breit-Wigner (Cauchy) distributions, and the inapplicability of Heisenberg type uncertainty relations. II.7. Interferometers. II.8. Imaging processes and signal analysis. II.9. Sensory perception and neuroscience. II.10. Five other subjects and their implications. II.11. Mathematical appendix. III: Construction of quantum mechanics on phase space. III.1. Group representation theory. III.2. The Heisenberg group (Weyl algebra) and the Affine group. III.3. Representations of the Galilei group. III.4. Representations of the Poincare group. III.5. Remarks on the de Sitter group. IV: Consequences of formulating quantum mechanics on phase space. IV.1. The quantum/classical connection. IV.2. Quantum field theory. IV.3. Spring cleaningin the house of quantum mechanics. IV.4. Reprise: Expanding the realm of application of quantum mechanics. IV.5. A discrete (lattice) quantum universe, and computability. V: Foundational aspects. V.1. Relation to generalized quantum logic. V.2. P.O.V.M.'s arising on operational manuals. V.3. Relation to quantum mechanical measurement theory. V.4. Philosophical and other foundational aspects. References. Index.
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