Questions tagged [mathematical-physics]

DO NOT USE THIS TAG for elemetary physical questions. This tag is intended for questions on modern mathematical methods used in quantum theory, general relativity, string theory, integrable system etc at an advanced undergraduate or graduate level.

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Open problems in General Relativity

I would like to know if there are some open mathematical problems in General Relativity, that are important from the point of view of Physics. Is there something that still needs to be justified ...
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What is “Bra” and “Ket” notation and how does it relate to Hilbert spaces?

This is my first semester of quantum mechanics and higher mathematics and I am completely lost. I have tried to find help at my university, browsed similar questions on this site, looked at my ...
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String Theory: What to do?

This is going to be a relatively broad/open-ended question, so I apologize before hand if it is the wrong place to ask this. Anyways, I'm currently a 3rd year undergraduate starting to more seriously ...
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Level of Rigor in Mathematical Physics

I am a physics/math undergrad and I have recently become familiar with some more rigorous formalisms of mechanics, such as Lagrangian mechanics and Noether's Theorem. However, I've noticed that the ...
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How to create new mathematics? [closed]

How do scientists and mathematicians create new mathematics for describing concepts? What is new mathematics? Is it necessarily in format of previous mathematics? Can one person make (invent or ...
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What are some math concepts which were originally inspired by physics?

There are a number of concepts which were first introduced in the physics literature (usually in an ad-hoc manner) to solve or simplify a particular problem, but later proven rigorously and adopted as ...
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Find the height of a bar, given the lengths of shadows cast by it and another bar [duplicate]

What is the height of the red bar? My try: with respect to the picture, it seems for the green bar $\frac{h}{H}=\frac{2}{3}$. So, I think that ratio is the same for the red bar, and the height of the ...
408 views

How are topological invariants obtained from TQFTs used in practice?

Topological quantum field theories (TQFTs) are studied for different reasons, as exemplified in the following places: Atiyah, Topological quantum field theory Lurie, Topological Quantum Field Theory ...
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Why do zeta regularization and path integrals agree on functional determinants?

When looking up the functional determinant on Wikipedia, a reader is treated to two possible definitions of the functional determinant, and their agreement is trivial in finite dimensions. The first ...
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Mathematical and Theoretical Physics Books

Which are the good introductory books on modern mathematical physics? Which are the good advanced books? I read Whittaker's Analytical Dynamics, and I am reading Arnold's Mathematical Methods of ...
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Atiyah's definitions of Topological Quantum Field Theory

According to Atiyah, a TQFT is a functor from the category of cobordisms to the category of vector spaces. How does this definition relate with the physics of quantum mechanics? What does the ...
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Functional differential equation (from Quantum Field Theory).

I have a certain differential equation that includes functional derivatives. I know the solution, but I'm having a hard time to show that the equation is indeed solved by the solution. The background ...
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Mathematics needed in the study of Quantum Physics

As a 12th grade student , I'm currently acquainted with single variable calculus, algebra, and geometry, obviously on a high school level. I tried taking a Quantum Physics course on coursera.com, but ...
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Correct spaces for quantum mechanics

The general formulation of quantum mechanics is done by describing quantum mechanical states by vectors $|\psi_t(x)\rangle$ in some Hilbert space $\mathcal{H}$ and describes their time evolution by ...
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Do infinity and zero really exist? [closed]

From the first day that I entered college, I was wondering about the relationship between some basic mathematical abstract concepts and nature. I'm going to explain them here and you may find them a ...
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Stochastic interpretation of Einstein equations

Einstein's theory of gravitation, general relativity, is a purely geometric theory. In a recent question I wanted to know what the relation of Brownian motion to the Helmholtz equation is and got a ...
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What's the Clifford algebra?

I'm reading a book on Clifford algebra for physicists. I don't quite understand it conceptually even if I can do most algebraic manipulations. Can some-one teach me what the Clifford algebra really is?...
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A fun problem by Arnold using the Poincaré recurrence theorem

I came across this problem by V. I. Arnold while studying his classical mechanics book. Consider a sequence where the $n^{th}$ term is made up by considering the first digit of $2^n$, the first ...
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Integral results in difference of means $\pi(\frac{a+b}{2} - \sqrt{ab})$

$$\int_a^b \left\{ \left(1-\frac{a}{r}\right)\left(\frac{b}{r}-1\right)\right\}^{1/2}dr = \pi\left(\frac{a+b}{2} - \sqrt{ab}\right)$$ What an interesting integral! What strikes me is that the result ...
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What is the motivation for analytic solutions in Mathematical Physics?

I am trying to understand why one cares about solving PDE's with an analytic/theoretical solution when one can use numerical methods? If you tell me, "only mathematicians try to find theoretical ...
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Quantum mechanics for mathematicians

I'm looking for books about quantum mechanics (or related fields) that are written for mathematicians or are more mathematically inclined. Of course, the field is very big so I'm in particular ...
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Areas of contemporary Mathematical Physics

I have often heard that some developments in Physics such as Gauge Theory, String Theory, Twistor Theory, Loop Quantum Gravity etc. have had a significant impact on pure mathematics especially ...
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Relation between $SU(4)$ and $SO(6)$

This is more of a particle physics question than maths. Since $\operatorname{SO}(6)$ and $\operatorname{SU}(4)$ are isomorphic, how are the fields (say for example scalar fields of ${\mathcal{N}}=4$ ...
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Guidance regarding research in Mathematical Physics

I am currently a Master's student in Mathematics. The main focus of my undergraduate programme was on Mathematics. However as a part of the course, I have done some Theoretical Physics courses. In ...
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Why does the “separation of variables” method for DEs work? [duplicate]

Heyho, I am using the separation-of-variables method for quite a while now, but what was always bothering me a bit, is why is it possible to do those operations. I'll give a concrete example (source ...
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Quantum mechanical books for mathematicians

I'm a mathematician. I have good knowledge of superior analysis, distribution theory, Hilbert spaces, Sobolev spaces, and applications to PDE theory. I also have good knowledge of differential ...