Do We Really Understand Quantum Mechanics? by Franck Laloë

By Franck Laloë

Quantum mechanics is a truly winning idea that has impacted on many parts of physics, from natural concept to purposes. notwithstanding, it's tough to interpret, and philosophical contradictions and counterintuitive effects are obvious at a primary point. during this booklet, Laloë provides our present realizing of the idea. The publication explores the fundamental questions and problems that come up with the idea of quantum mechanics. It examines a few of the interpretations which were proposed, describing and evaluating them and discussing their luck and problems. The e-book is perfect for researchers in physics and arithmetic who need to know extra concerning the difficulties confronted in quantum mechanics yet who would not have professional wisdom within the topic. it's going to additionally curiosity philosophers of technology, in addition to all scientists who're concerned with quantum physics and its peculiarities.

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In the discussion, it is assumed that the detectors are ideal and have 100% efficiency. Suppose that the wave packet describing the wave function of the particle reaches the first detector. Two possibilities may occur: • Either the particle is detected by D1 . It then disappears, and the state vector is projected onto a state containing no particle and an excited detector (the first); later, the second detector D2 will never record a particle. This first possibility occurs in most realizations of the experiment.

Any possible conflict between two different evolution postulates then disappears. It is nevertheless replaced by another difficulty since, in each experiment, one has to distinguish between two different parts: observed system(s) and measurement apparatus(es). Only the latter are directly accessible to human experience and can be described with ordinary language, as in classical physics. The measurement apparatuses and observers then have a very specific role. They provide the results of measurements to observers, so that they are at the origin of our perception of the physical world; but at the same time they also introduce an irreducible non-deterministic component into the theory and into the evolution of physical systems.

There is only an abstract physical description. It is wrong to think that the task of physics is to find out how Nature is. Physics concerns what we can say about Nature”. Or, similarly: “there is no quantum concept” [62]. Concerning physical phenomena: “one may strongly advocate limitation of the use of the word phenomenon to refer exclusively to observations obtained under specified circumstances, including an account of the whole experiment” [46]. He also defines the purpose of physics in the following way [63, 64]: “Physics is to be regarded not so much as the study of something a priori given, but rather as the development of methods of ordering and surveying human experience.

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