"Autonomous quantum to classical transitions", Friday, February 16, 12:00pm, MH 629

 

Jim Feagin, CSU Fullerton

 
ABSTRACT: The mechanism of the transition of a system from quantum to classical mechanics is of continuing interest. Practically it is of importance for the interpretation of measurements performed at macroscopic distances from a microscopic reaction. Here, an imaging theorem is presented which shows that the spatial wave function of any quantum system, propagating over distances and times large on an atomic scale, becomes proportional to the initial momentum wave function where the position and momentum coordinates define a classical trajectory. Currently, the quantum to classical transition is considered to occur via decoherence caused by interaction with an environment. The imaging theorem arises from unitary Schrödinger propagation and so is valid without any environmental interaction.