Primer of Quantum Mechanics | |||

Chester (Marvin) | |||

This Page provides (where held) the Abstract of the above Book and those of all the Papers contained in it. | |||

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**BOOK ABSTRACT: **__Preface__

- Quantum mechanics
^{1}is the fundamental theoretical infrastructure upon which all understanding of the nature of the physical world is built. This book is an exposition of that theory presented at the level of a junior-year undergraduate physics student. The reader must have attained a level of technical training that includes these essentials:- A freshman-year survey course in physics. The survey should have included an overview of electricity and magnetism, classical mechanics, and a historical introduction to quantum mechanics
^{2}. - A good grasp of mathematics that includes integral calculus, vector analysis, differential equations, complex numbers, and fourier analysis. The reader should be able to evaluate a determinant and to perform elementary matrix addition and multiplication.
- A first course in classical Newtonian mechanics. The concept of a Hamiltonian and its significance should have been explored.

- A freshman-year survey course in physics. The survey should have included an overview of electricity and magnetism, classical mechanics, and a historical introduction to quantum mechanics
- In writing this book, I set as my primary task this one: to fuse the mathematical machinery of quantum mechanics
^{3}with the philosophical world view embedded in it. - That the mathematics appear to grow organically out of the philosophy was my aim in the exposition. My object was to present a consistent physical imagery that tightly parallels the mathematics and thus, with verbal threads, to weave the philosophical tapestry into the mathematical formalism.
- It is incontrovertible that quantum mechanics
^{4}faithfully describes nature’s behavior. To accommodate one’s world view to what is nature’s behavior is the reason for a philosophical tapestry. The tapestry allows us to have a way of perceiving nature as natural. - In his classic work,
*Principles of Quantum Mechanics*, P. A. M. Dirac initiated the fusion process. To spotlight the physics within the mathematics, he invented a special notation. Dirac notation embodies the quantum mechanical way of thinking about nature.^{5} - This book is entirely in the language of Dirac notation. My finding has been that even junior-year undergraduates can acquire an impressive facility with Dirac notation when the physical imagery is embedded in the mathematics.
- That imagery must necessarily treat the question "What does quantum mechanics
^{6}tell us about the nature of nature?” This question serves as the underlying theme in the book. *Primer*is meant to be a step in the process that Dirac initiated: to build a quantum intuition; to perceive the quantum universe as self-evident. That the endeavor appears in the format of a primer on the subject is natural: the place to expose the philosophical tapestry is at the first encounter with the formalism.- The study is pursued by examining what quantum mechanics
^{7}says about the key model physical systems of nature. In the examination are encountered all the practical mathematical techniques useful to a student of the subject.

→ Marvin Chester, Los Angeles, 1987

Advanced Undergraduate level ("Junior-year" in the preface refers to the third of four years' undergraduate study, after Freshman and Sophomore, but before Senior)

- Blue: Text by me; © Theo Todman, 2020
- Mauve: Text by correspondent(s) or other author(s); © the author(s)

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