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Explaining Quantum Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking

Liu, Chuang and Emch, Gerard G. (2004) Explaining Quantum Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking. [Preprint]


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Two alternative accounts of quantum spontaneous symmetry breaking (SSB) are compared and one of them, the decompositional account in the algebraic approach, is argued to be superior for understanding quantum SSB. Two exactly solvable models are given as applications of our account -- the Weiss-Heisenberg model for ferromagnetism and the BCS model for superconductivity. Finally, the decompositional account is shown to be more conducive to the causal explanation of quantum SSB.

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Item Type: Preprint
Liu, Chuang
Emch, Gerard G.
Keywords: symmetry, spontaneous symmetry breaking, macroscopic limit, quantum statistical mechanics, quantum field theory, explanation
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Classical Physics
General Issues > Explanation
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Quantum Field Theory
Depositing User: Chuang Liu
Date Deposited: 31 May 2004
Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 15:12
Item ID: 1778

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