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Physics of Atoms and Molecules

Density Matrix Theory and Applications

Authors: Blum, Karl

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Quantum mechanics has been mostly concerned with those states of systems that are represented by state vectors. In many cases, however, the system of interest is incompletely determined; for example, it may have no more than a certain probability of being in the precisely defined dynamical state characterized by a state vector. Because of this incomplete knowledge, a need for statistical averaging arises in the same sense as in classical physics. The density matrix was introduced by J. von Neumann in 1927 to describe statistical concepts in quantum mechanics. The main virtue of the density matrix is its analytical power in the construction of general formulas and in the proof of general theorems. The evaluation of averages and probabilities of the physical quantities characterizing a given system is extremely cumbersome without the use of density matrix techniques. The representation of quantum mechanical states by density matrices enables the maximum information available on the system to be expressed in a compact manner and hence avoids the introduction of unnecessary variables. The use of density matrix methods also has the advanĀ­ tage of providing a uniform treatment of all quantum mechanical states, whether they are completely or incompletely known. Until recently the use of the density matrix method has been mainly restricted to statistical physics. In recent years, however, the application of the density matrix has been gaining more and more importance in many other fields of physics.

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from a review of the First Edition:
`[The author's] clear pedagogic style makes this a very useful reference work for readers who want to learn density matrix theory. ... Highly recommended, particularly for graduate school physics libraries.'
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Table of contents (8 chapters)

Table of contents (8 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $179.00
price for USA in USD (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-4757-4931-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $229.00
price for USA in USD
  • ISBN 978-1-4419-3257-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Density Matrix Theory and Applications
Authors
Series Title
Physics of Atoms and Molecules
Copyright
1996
Publisher
Springer US
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media New York
eBook ISBN
978-1-4757-4931-1
DOI
10.1007/978-1-4757-4931-1
Softcover ISBN
978-1-4419-3257-0
Edition Number
2
Number of Pages
XV, 327
Number of Illustrations
1 b/w illustrations
Topics

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