News

Rewriting quantum mechanics in their spare time

A pair of civil servants solve a quantum mechanics problem that had bothered them since they were students
The study took Jussi Lindgren, left, and Jukka Liukkonen, right, back to year 1941 when Stueckelberg’s wave equation was invented. The equation is the foundation for parameterized relativistic dynamics.
The study took Jussi Lindgren, left, and Jukka Liukkonen, right, back to year 1941 when Stueckelberg’s wave equation was invented. The equation is the foundation for parameterized relativistic dynamics.

As students, Jussi Lindgren and Jukka Liukkonen had found one element of their quantum mechanics lectures unsatisfying. “When we were taught physics, there were some fundamental elements you were told were true, and you had to accept they were true without it being shown why,” said Jussi Lindgren, “and I didn’t really like this”.

Working as a hobby alongside their jobs in the Finnish government, and Lindgren’s PhD work in systems analysis at Aalto, the researchers devised a new method for expressing the laws of quantum mechanics using stochastic methods, a type of mathematics that deals with random chance and probability.

The paper, published 27 December in Scientific Reports explores how stochastic methods can be used to derive a variety of equations in quantum mechanics from first principles, as opposed to having to build from ad hoc prior postulates. “The method will be useful for teachers or learners because it gives a better understanding of the reason why something is correct,” said Jukka Liukkonen.

You can read the full paper at https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-019-56357-3

  • Published:
  • Updated:
Share
URL copied!

Related news

KTT Sami Itani
Research & Art Published:

Doctor’s career path: CEO Sami Itani’s story

‘Doctoral studies consist of team-based project work in which you can act as your own project manager.’
kaksi naista istuu punaisilla tuoleilla studiossa keskustelemassa, taustalla musta verho ja keltainen lattia
Research & Art, Studies Published:

What can we learn from the pandemic?

Aalto University's studio discussion focused on what the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us about the importance of the environment for health and wellbeing.
Assistant Professor Peter Nyberg, McKinsey Teacher of the Year 2020.
Honoured, Research & Art Published:

Aalto BIZ Teacher of the Year 2020

Finance Assistant Professor Peter Nyberg has been nominated as the Aalto BIZ Teacher of the Year 2020.
Machine Learning Coffee Seminar logo in purple and white colours
Research & Art Published:

Machine Learning Coffee Seminars continue with a great lineup of speakers

MLCS gathers together people from different fields of science who have at least one thing in common, interest in machine learning