Monday, January 31, 2011

Something from "nothing" - the Casimir Effect.

As promised, I'm taking a small break from introductory quantum mechanics, and discussing a topic that has some very real consequences in real life. This is one of the more strange predictions of quantum theory, so hold on. Ever heard of zero point energy? If you have it's related to the Casimir effect.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, Part 2


Welcome to part 2 of my explanation of the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. Today, I'm going to introduce the concepts of a quantum "state", an "ensemble" of states, and probability density. Only with this framework can you accurately describe what the uncertainty principle. But first, a video. This is from a TV show that tried to popularize mathematics, by showing its uses. Being employed as a mathematician, a lot of their explanations bugged me. This one especially bugs me.


Why? Read on.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, Part 1

Hold on readers, these next couple posts are going to be rough. The Heisenberg Uncertainty principle is fundamental to understanding quantum theory, but is a rather confusing topic. It isn't extremely complicated, but it is VERY subtle and easily misunderstood. Through the next couple posts, I hope to illuminate this highly misunderstood topic. Let us begin this venture with a short clip from one of my favorite television shows.

video

Sunday, January 23, 2011

So what is quantum mechanics?

People throw the words "quantum mechanics" around without really understanding what it really means. What is quantum mechanics? Why is it necessary?  These are the questions I will be answering.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Greetings to the curious

Hello readers. If you have a fascination with Quantum Physics, but do not have the time, energy, or background to study the subject in depth, you are in luck! At least, that is my hope. The purpose of this blog is to describe quantum mechanics with as little math as possible. While Quantum Mechanics requires extensive knowledge of Linear Algebra, Calculus, Partial Differential Equations, Group Theory, as well as other advanced topics in Mathematics, I believe the principles can be understood with little to no math. That is my main goal.