Subscribe
Subscribe
MY AMERICAN SCIENTIST
LOG IN! REGISTER!
SEARCH
 
Logo IMG
HOME > PAST ISSUE > May-June 2002 > Article Detail

FEATURE ARTICLE

Quantum Identity

Physicists have long struggled with the weirdness of quantum mechanics—a consequence of like particles being completely indistinguishable from one another

Peter Pesic

Figure 6. Scanning tunneling microscope image . . .Click to Enlarge Image

Quantum physics poses a serious challenge to the intuition. An electron, for example, can act both as a wave and as a particle. This curious aspect of nature has been known to physicists since the early part of the 20th century, yet it still seems very weird, even to those schooled in quantum mechanics. Here a historian of science argues that wave-particle duality can be seen a consequence of the fact that like particles are identical to one another, a property he terms "identicality."


 Go to Article


comments powered by Disqus
 

EMAIL TO A FRIEND :

Of Possible Interest

Engineering: The Story of Two Houses

Letters to the Editors: The Truth about Models

Letters to the Editors: When Horses Fly

 

Foreign-Language PDFs

German

Spanish

Subscribe to American Scientist