A Matter of Degree: Putting Unitary Equivalence to Work.
A characteristic feature of quantum field theory is the availability of unitarily inequivalent representations of its canonical commutation relations. Under the prima facie reasonable assumption that unitary equivalence is a necessary condition for physical equivalence, this availability implies that there are many physically inequivalent quantizations of any classical field theory. To explore this dramatic non-uniqueness, and its implications for our understanding of how physical theories delimit physical possibility, I examine some of the uses to which unitarily inequivalent representations are put in another setting in which they arise: the thermodynamic limit of quantum statistical mechanics.
||Quantum Field Theory, Structure of Theories, Thermodynamics, Statistical Mechanics, interpretation
||23 Mar 2003
||07 Oct 2010 15:11
Monthly Views for the past 3 years
Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years
Actions (login required)