Session:

Upper Division and Graduate Topics

Paper Type:

Contributed

Title:

Applying the Correspondence Principle to the ThreeDimensional Rigid Rotor

Meeting:

2014 Winter Meeting: Orlando, Florida 
Location:

N/A 
Date:


Time:

11:00AM

Author:

David Keeports, Mills College
5104302162, dave@mills.edu

CoAuthor(s):

None

Abstract:

According to the quantum mechanical correspondence principle, a quantum system can pass well as a classical system if the system's quantum numbers are very large. Application of the correspondence principle to some basic problems in quantum mechanics including the particle in a onedimensional infinite well, the linear harmonic oscillator, and the twodimensional rigid rotor is quite straightforward. However, the threedimensional rigid rotor provides a greater challenge due to the complexity of the spherical harmonic functions that describe the rotor's angular orientation. I will explain why the seemingly classical rotation of a large rigid rotor in the xyplane implies that quantum numbers J and MJ are equal and very large. Furthermore, I will demonstrate that the values of these quantum numbers imply a very simple spherical harmonic function that is consistent with the rotor's apparently classical behavior.

Footnotes:

None

Presentation:

Keeports W14.pdf

