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Lost Causes In And Beyond Physics

Author: R.F. Streater
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3540365826
Size: 42.14 MB
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This book deals with a selection of research topics in theoretical physics that have (almost) been proven to be a dead-end or continue at least to be highly controversial. Nevertheless, small but dedicated research communities continue to work on these issues. In a series of essays this book describes their work and struggle as well as the chances of any breakthrough in these areas. It is written as both an entertainment and serious study.

Non Selfadjoint Operators In Quantum Physics

Author: Fabio Bagarello
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118855264
Size: 59.19 MB
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A unique discussion of mathematical methods with applications to quantum mechanics Non-Selfadjoint Operators in Quantum Physics: Mathematical Aspects presents various mathematical constructions influenced by quantum mechanics and emphasizes the spectral theory of non-adjoint operators. Featuring coverage of functional analysis and algebraic methods in contemporary quantum physics, the book discusses the recent emergence of unboundedness of metric operators, which is a serious issue in the study of parity-time-symmetric quantum mechanics. The book also answers mathematical questions that are currently the subject of rigorous analysis with potentially significant physical consequences. In addition to prompting a discussion on the role of mathematical methods in the contemporary development of quantum physics, the book features: Chapter contributions written by well-known mathematical physicists who clarify numerous misunderstandings and misnomers while shedding light on new approaches in this growing area An overview of recent inventions and advances in understanding functional analytic and algebraic methods for non-selfadjoint operators as well as the use of Krein space theory and perturbation theory Rigorous support of the progress in theoretical physics of non-Hermitian systems in addition to mathematically justified applications in various domains of physics such as nuclear and particle physics and condensed matter physics An ideal reference, Non-Selfadjoint Operators in Quantum Physics: Mathematical Aspects is useful for researchers, professionals, and academics in applied mathematics and theoretical and/or applied physics who would like to expand their knowledge of classical applications of quantum tools to address problems in their research. Also a useful resource for recent and related trends, the book is appropriate as a graduate-level and/or PhD-level text for courses on quantum mechanics and mathematical models in physics.

Statistical Dynamics

Author: R. F. Streater
Publisher: Imperial College Press
ISBN: 1848162448
Size: 76.67 MB
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How can one construct dynamical systems obeying the first and second laws of thermodynamics: mean energy is conserved and entropy increases with time? This book answers the question for classical probability (Part I) and quantum probability (Part II). A novel feature is the introduction of heat particles which supply thermal noise and represent the kinetic energy of the molecules. When applied to chemical reactions, the theory leads to the usual nonlinear reaction-diffusion equations as well as modifications of them. These can exhibit oscillations, or can converge to equilibrium.In this second edition, the text is simplified in parts and the bibliography has been expanded. The main difference is the addition of two new chapters; in the first, classical fluid dynamics is introduced. A lattice model is developed, which in the continuum limit gives us the Euler equations. The five Navier-Stokes equations are also presented, modified by a diffusion term in the continuity equation. The second addition is in the last chapter, which now includes estimation theory, both classical and quantum, using information geometry.

Mathematical Tools For Physicists

Author: Michael Grinfeld
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 3527684271
Size: 56.16 MB
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The new edition is significantly updated and expanded. This unique collection of review articles, ranging from fundamental concepts up to latest applications, contains individual contributions written by renowned experts in the relevant fields. Much attention is paid to ensuring fast access to the information, with each carefully reviewed article featuring cross-referencing, references to the most relevant publications in the field, and suggestions for further reading, both introductory as well as more specialized. While the chapters on group theory, integral transforms, Monte Carlo methods, numerical analysis, perturbation theory, and special functions are thoroughly rewritten, completely new content includes sections on commutative algebra, computational algebraic topology, differential geometry, dynamical systems, functional analysis, graph and network theory, PDEs of mathematical physics, probability theory, stochastic differential equations, and variational methods.

The Order Of Time

Author: Carlo Rovelli
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0735216126
Size: 73.21 MB
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The perfect graduation gift "Meet the new Stephen Hawking . . . The Order of Time is a dazzling book." --The Sunday Times From the bestselling author of Seven Brief Lessons on Physics, a concise, elegant exploration of time. Why do we remember the past and not the future? What does it mean for time to "flow"? Do we exist in time or does time exist in us? In lyric, accessible prose, Carlo Rovelli invites us to consider questions about the nature of time that continue to puzzle physicists and philosophers alike. For most readers this is unfamiliar terrain. We all experience time, but the more scientists learn about it, the more mysterious it remains. We think of it as uniform and universal, moving steadily from past to future, measured by clocks. Rovelli tears down these assumptions one by one, revealing a strange universe where at the most fundamental level time disappears. He explains how the theory of quantum gravity attempts to understand and give meaning to the resulting extreme landscape of this timeless world. Weaving together ideas from philosophy, science and literature, he suggests that our perception of the flow of time depends on our perspective, better understood starting from the structure of our brain and emotions than from the physical universe. Already a bestseller in Italy, and written with the poetic vitality that made Seven Brief Lessons on Physics so appealing, The Order of Time offers a profoundly intelligent, culturally rich, novel appreciation of the mysteries of time.

Lost In Math

Author: Sabine Hossenfelder
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465094260
Size: 13.95 MB
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A contrarian argues that modern physicists' obsession with beauty has given us wonderful math but bad science Whether pondering black holes or predicting discoveries at CERN, physicists believe the best theories are beautiful, natural, and elegant, and this standard separates popular theories from disposable ones. This is why, Sabine Hossenfelder argues, we have not seen a major breakthrough in the foundations of physics for more than four decades. The belief in beauty has become so dogmatic that it now conflicts with scientific objectivity: observation has been unable to confirm mindboggling theories, like supersymmetry or grand unification, invented by physicists based on aesthetic criteria. Worse, these "too good to not be true" theories are actually untestable and they have left the field in a cul-de-sac. To escape, physicists must rethink their methods. Only by embracing reality as it is can science discover the truth.

Now The Physics Of Time

Author: Richard A. Muller
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393285243
Size: 72.81 MB
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From the celebrated author of the best-selling Physics for Future Presidents comes “a provocative, strongly argued book on the fundamental nature of time” (Lee Smolin). You are reading the word “now” right now. But what does that mean? What makes the ephemeral moment “now” so special? Its enigmatic character has bedeviled philosophers, priests, and modern-day physicists from Augustine to Einstein and beyond. Einstein showed that the flow of time is affected by both velocity and gravity, yet he despaired at his failure to explain the meaning of “now.” Equally puzzling: why does time flow? Some physicists have given up trying to understand, and call the flow of time an illusion, but the eminent experimentalist physicist Richard A. Muller protests. He says physics should explain reality, not deny it. In Now, Muller does more than poke holes in past ideas; he crafts his own revolutionary theory, one that makes testable predictions. He begins by laying out—with the refreshing clarity that made Physics for Future Presidents so successful—a firm and remarkably clear explanation of the physics building blocks of his theory: relativity, entropy, entanglement, antimatter, and the Big Bang. With the stage then set, he reveals a startling way forward. Muller’s monumental work will spark major debate about the most fundamental assumptions of our universe, and may crack one of physics’s longest-standing enigmas.

Beyond The Moon

Author: James Greig McCully
Publisher: World Scientific
ISBN: 9812774335
Size: 25.79 MB
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Finally, someone has written a comprehensive, easily readable explanation of the tides on earth that is both simple enough for students and solid enough for their professors. Step by step, by analogy and illustration, Beyond the Moon describes how the cyclical motion of the near solar system is impressed upon the earth's oceans, and how the hydraulics over the continental shelf and the geography of the coastline orchestrate this rhythm into the bewildering variety of tide patterns seen around the globe. This volume demystifies the complexity of the tides by systematically examining its many constituents and demonstrates that: OC Nature is, at once, awesome in complexity and beautiful in simplicity.OCO"

Not Even Wrong

Author: Peter Woit
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 046500363X
Size: 73.67 MB
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When does physics depart the realm of testable hypothesis and come to resemble theology? Peter Woit argues that string theory isn't just going in the wrong direction, it's not even science. Not Even Wrong shows that what many physicists call superstring “theory” is not a theory at all. It makes no predictions, not even wrong ones, and this very lack of falsifiability is what has allowed the subject to survive and flourish. Peter Woit explains why the mathematical conditions for progress in physics are entirely absent from superstring theory today, offering the other side of the story.