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Preprints, Working Papers, ... Year : 2021

The geometrical meaning of spinors as a key to make sense of quantum mechanics

Abstract

This paper aims at explaining that the key to understanding quantum mechanics (QM) is a perfect geometrical understanding of the spinor algebra that is used in its formulation. Spinors occur naturally in the representation theory of certain symmetry groups. The spinors that are relevant for QM are those of the homogeneous Lorentz group SO(3,1) in Minkowski space-time R 4 and its subgroup SO(3) of the rotations of three-dimensional Euclidean space R 3. In the three-dimensional rotation group the spinors occur within its representation SU(2). We will provide the reader with a perfect intuitive insight about what is going on behind the scenes of the spinor algebra. We will then use the understanding acquired to derive the free-space Dirac equation from scratch proving that it is a description of a statistical ensemble of spinning electrons in uniform motion, completely in the spirit of Ballentine's statistical interpretation of QM. This is a mathematically rigorous proof. Developing this further we allow for the presence of an electromagnetic field. We can consider the result as a reconstruction of QM based on the geometrical understanding of the spinor algebra. By discussing a number of problems in the interpretation of the conventional approach, we illustrate how this new approach leads to a better understanding of QM.
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Origin : Files produced by the author(s)
Origin : Files produced by the author(s)

Dates and versions

hal-03175981 , version 1 (22-03-2021)

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-03175981 , version 1

Cite

Gerrit Coddens. The geometrical meaning of spinors as a key to make sense of quantum mechanics. 2021. ⟨hal-03175981⟩
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