Chapter

Quantum Theory

Frank S. Levin

in Surfing the Quantum World

Published in print September 2017 | ISBN: 9780198808275
Published online November 2017 | e-ISBN: 9780191846014 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oso/9780198808275.003.0009
Quantum Theory

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The subject of Chapter 8 is the fundamental principles of quantum theory, the abstract extension of quantum mechanics. Two of the entities explored are kets and operators, with kets being representations of quantum states as well as a source of wave functions. The quantum box and quantum spin kets are specified, as are the quantum numbers that identify them. Operators are introduced and defined in part as the symbolic representations of observable quantities such as position, momentum and quantum spin. Eigenvalues and eigenkets are defined and discussed, with the former identified as the possible outcomes of a measurement. Bras, the counterpart to kets, are introduced as the means of forming probability amplitudes from kets. Products of operators are examined, as is their role underpinning Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle. A variety of symbol manipulations are presented. How measurements are believed to collapse linear superpositions to one term of the sum is explored.

Keywords: Kets; operators; position; spin; eigenvalues; eigenkets; bras; probability amplitudes; Uncertainty Principle; collapse

Chapter.  7144 words. 

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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