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Quantum Mechanics introduces a dramatically new and rich understanding of the universe. In addition to providing a much deeper insight into the world of atoms and subatomic particles than afforded by classical Newtonian physics, Quantum Mechanics underpins advances in science across all disciplines, from molecular biology to astrophysics. This subject provides a rigorous mathematical formalism for advanced quantum mechanics, laying the foundation for further fundamental theoretical physics and research-level experimental physics in frontier areas such as quantum communication and quantum computation.
The subject describes the Hilbert-space formulation of quantum wave mechanics, including density matrix descriptions for single and joint Hilbert space systems; symmetries and conservation laws including rotations and angular momentum; many-body systems of identical particles; time-dependent perturbation theory, and scattering theory.
Intended learning outcomes
The objectives of this subject are:
- understanding the Hilbert-space formalism of modern quantum mechanics, with bra-ket and matrix notations, and the role of symmetries and related conservation laws;
- understanding density matrices for single and joint Hilbert spaces, the difference between pure and mixed states, and entanglement;
- understanding how many-body systems can be treated with a modern quantum mechanical framework;
- ability to apply time-dependent perturbation methods to physical systems and thus predict measurable outcomes;
At the completion of this subject, students should have gained skills in:
- analysing how to solve a problem by applying simple fundamental laws to more complicated situations;
- applying abstract concepts to real-world situations;
- solving relatively complicated problems using approximations;
- participating as an effective member of a group in discussions and collaborative assignments;
- managing time effectively in order to be prepared for group discussions and undertake the assignments and exam.
Last updated: 3 November 2022