[Communicating science series][Gobbledygook ahoy, PopSci call-outs, …] “Can particles really be in two places at once?“ So remote from everyday experience: How to describe physical behavior that human communication never evolved to describe? To describe something that the mere act of observation extinguishes? Use an abstract symbolic framework like mathematics? And then “convert” mathematical expressions… Continue reading In two places at once – popsci call-outs
[“Knot theory” series] Regarding the topology of fundamental particles as spinors, like the electron, I prefer the term knot, rather than kink or twist or vortex . Then I’m curious about ordering the complexity (à la generations) of these knots. And whether such knots are situated in additional dimensions. Wiki: In quantum field theory, the… Continue reading Knotty fields – quantum-topology-knot theory
[“Communicating science” series] [“Quantum foundations” series] [“What the heck” series] I’ve written about entanglement in prior posts and comments. Over a year ago, I also wrote some preliminary notes. A recent issue of The Caltech Weekly (April 14, 2022) prompted this post. In part because of my ongoing search for better, more compelling analogies (for… Continue reading What the heck is quantum entanglement?
[Draft] [Beyond series] 2’s day. So, what’s the evidence that the Standard Model is incomplete? This Symmetry Magazine article cites some examples of why physicists seek something beyond the Standard Model. Is it convincing? • Symmetry Magazine > “Beyond the Standard Model” by Katrina Miller (02/22/2022) – The Standard Model is a quite successful best… Continue reading Beyond the Standard Model – sliver of reality?
[Preliminary – requires clarification of the distinction between classical superposition (as for mechanical waves) and superposition that occurs in quantum mechanics (quantum superposition).] The linear venue Some grocery stores still have spring scales in the fresh produce section. Let’s say, just to get the raw weight, you use the scale to weigh some oranges –… Continue reading What the heck is superposition?
So, occasionally I run across articles which mention quantum dots; but more frequently I notice this technology promoted in higher quality flat screen displays and TVs. Photo-luminescent nanotechnology. This Phys.org article (below) reminds me that the technology is critical in quantum information processing, e.g., quantum computing. And as Wiki notes, modeling quantum dots showcases the… Continue reading Quantum dots – not just for TVs
[Communicating science series] All hail vector spaces! Imagine walking into an elementary school classroom and finding kids talking about quantum states. Depicting quantum interactions using diagrams and bra-ket manipulatives, for wave functions. Someday, eh. While we may never achieve Ernest Rutherford‘s notion of a quantum theory so simple that we can explain it to an… Continue reading Quantum mechanics math basics – tasting the notation
[“Quantum foundations” series] [Updated December 2019] Introduction to this topic If Murray Gell-Mann was right that Niels Bohr brainwashed a generation of physicists to accept the Copenhagen Interpretation, either his influence has waned or he didn’t do a very good job in the first place. For in an informal poll conducted at an international meeting… Continue reading Quantum reality, quantum worlds – new book explores quantum foundations
In reading about vibrations in fields and wave functions and wave packets, some words that start with ‘e’ occurred a lot: eigenvalue, eigenvector, eigenfunction, eigenvalue equation, eigenequation . I needed to refresh my understanding of the mathematical models for macroscopic and microscopic systems . Everyday we are surrounded by things that vibrate when excited. Some… Continue reading Eigen what?
Over the weekend, I started reading Sean Carroll’s The Particle at the End of the Universe. Well written . At times his colloquial description of a concept prompted me to: (1) wonder if he was referring to a particular technical phenomenon; and (2) explore the specialized, technical background of that concept. In either case, quite… Continue reading Vocabulary at the end of the verse