Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions

Reimann P, Evstigneev M (2013)
Physical Review E 88(5).

Journal Article | Published | English

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Abstract
Focusing on isolated macroscopic systems, described in terms of either a quantum mechanical or a classical model, our two key questions are how far does an initial ensemble (usually far from equilibrium and largely unknown in detail) evolve towards a stationary long-time behavior (equilibration) and how far is this steady state in agreement with the microcanonical ensemble as predicted by statistical mechanics (thermalization). A recently developed quantum mechanical treatment of the problem is briefly summarized, putting particular emphasis on the realistic modeling of experimental measurements and nonequilibrium initial conditions. Within this framework, equilibration can be proven under very weak assumptions about those measurements and initial conditions, while thermalization still requires quite strong additional hypotheses. An analogous approach within the framework of classical mechanics is developed and compared with the quantum case. In particular, the assumptions to guarantee classical equilibration are now rather strong, while thermalization then follows under relatively weak additional conditions.
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Reimann P, Evstigneev M. Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions. Physical Review E. 2013;88(5).
Reimann, P., & Evstigneev, M. (2013). Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions. Physical Review E, 88(5).
Reimann, P., and Evstigneev, M. (2013). Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions. Physical Review E 88.
Reimann, P., & Evstigneev, M., 2013. Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions. Physical Review E, 88(5).
P. Reimann and M. Evstigneev, “Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions”, Physical Review E, vol. 88, 2013.
Reimann, P., Evstigneev, M.: Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions. Physical Review E. 88, (2013).
Reimann, Peter, and Evstigneev, Mykhaylo. “Quantum versus classical foundation of statistical mechanics under experimentally realistic conditions”. Physical Review E 88.5 (2013).
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PMID: 24329221
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