Physics 580 - Quantum Mechanics - Fall 2016

Meets Monday & Wednesday 2:00-3:20 in 144 Loomis

Instructor: Bryan Clark

Office: ESB 2111

Email: bkclark at illinois dot edu

Office hours: Tuesday 4:00-5:00 (ESB 2111) or by appointment

 Souvik Dutta Pak On Chan Office : 426 Loomis Office : ESB 4139 Email: sdutta9 [at] illinois [dot] edu Email: pchan9 [at] illinois [dot] edu Office hours: Mondays at 1:00 Office hours: Tuesday 3:00-4:00

Lecture notes

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 1.  As I mentioned in class, I'm extending the deadline for homework 3 until Friday October 7 to give everyone more time to work on it.   2.  Problem 5 is no longer part of the homework and doesn't need to be done. (An improved simpler version is planned for a future homework) * Because we didn't get as far as I had anticipated today, problem 7  of homework 2 may be separately submitted until Friday at 5 PM. * I will hold an additional office hour on Thursday at 3PM this week. Problem Set 2 (3a) should be exp[tau^2 [A,B]/2] on the rhs (3e) should suggest that it is correct to higher order then the approximation in (3b). Problem Set 2 is posted;  Problem set 1 solutions are posted 9/12/16 The word "must" in question 3a is a typo.  Instead, I am just looking for a property of lambda1 and lambda2 which ensures that v1 and v2 are orthogonal.  In question 2c(iii), you may assume that they two states |phi> and |psi> are not orthogonal. 9/5/16 Problem Set 1 is posted 8/26/16 Welcome to 580. See you in class! The syllabus has been posted. Please check here regularly for announcements and updates to lecture notes and problem sets. 8/19/16

Course setup:

Subject Matter: This course will teach you quantum mechanics at a more advanced level then most student's will have seen in undergraduate quantum mechanics. We will attempt to develop a conceptual understanding of quantum phenomena as well as develop expertise at solving quantum problems.  We will cover a number of traditional topics including the postulates of quantum mechanics; wave-mechanics; reduced density matrices; simple harmonic oscillator;  time evolution; the role of  symmetries; atoms and molecules; angular momentum;  wkb; path integrals.  In addition, we will supplement the traditional material with more modern material including quantum computing, numerical methods, and entanglement.

The heart and soul of this course are the problem sets.  It is by doing problems that you will learn quantum mechanics.

Problem sets:

• There will be roughly 7~9 problem sets.
• They will generally be posted on Monday and will be due the next Wednesday (9 days later.)
• Solutions should be placed in the 580 homework box by 5pm on the due date
• (the homework box is located on the north side of Loomis Lab, between rooms 267 and 271 LLP)
• For practical reasons late problem sets will not be graded unless a verifiable excuse is given.
• For grading purposes your lowest scoring problem set will be dropped
• Mathematica, python, or equivalent may be used. Please submit the input/output.
• You may discuss the problems with your classmates but each student should provide his/her own solutions.
• Please do not use solutions to the problems that might be available online. This is at best bad for your mastery of quantum mechanics and at worst detectable by the TA.

• Problem sets (~ 70%)
• Midterm (~15%)
• Final (~15%)

Midterm and final exam instruction

• Midterm: in class on Wednesday Oct 19 from 2pm-3:30pm
• Final: TBD

Texts:  Here are various useful texts. You'll get the best understanding of quantum mechanics by reading through various expositions of the same material.

• Shankar (there is a free e-text for this from the library):  This is the required text for the course.  It's very readable and does a nice job with the mathematical formalism.
• Cohen-Tannoudji: This is a great reference and what I learned graduate quantum mechanics out of.  It has a great selection of problems (some of which will show up on your problem sets).
• Weinberg Lectures on Quantum Mechanics (there is a free e-text for this from the library):  This has a really nice exposition of many of the important aspects of quantum mechanics.  The only downside is that it eschews Dirac Notation for its own more confusing notation. If you get over this, though, it's ggood to read.
• Neilson and Chuang: Quantum Computation:  One of the modern areas of quantum mechanics we will cover that is under-covered in typical quantum books is quantum computation. This is a good reference for it.
• John Preskill's Quantum Computing notes (http://www.theory.caltech.edu/~preskill/ph219/index.html#lecture)
• Baym: Lectures on Quantum Mechanics
• Landau: Quantum Mechanics
• Feynman Lectures on Quantum Mechanics (http://www.feynmanlectures.caltech.edu/III_toc.html)
• Sakurai Modern Quantum Mechanics

In addition to various texts, there are some good notes online.  Two of note include: