David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Synthese 21 (1):65 - 82 (1970)
The statistical aspects of quantum explanation are intrinsic to quantum physics; individual quantum events are created in the interactions associated with observation and are not describable by predictive theory. The superposition principle shows the essential difference between quantum and non-quantum physics, and the principle is exemplified in the classic single-photon two-slit interference experiment. Recently Mandel and Pfleegor have done an experiment somewhat similar to the optical single-photon experiment but with two independently operated lasers; interference is obtained even with beam intensity so small that only one photon is in the apparatus at a time. The result can be understood in terms of the superposition of states; or, in terms of the Uncertainty Principle, which is found to forbid the determination of which of the two lasers is the source of a given photon (if conditions for interference are to obtain). The Mandel-Pfleegor experiment gives a physical argument against the continuous localization of a photon that is assumed in the hidden variable theories and therefore gives further support for the generally accepted view that an observed entity (observed state) is created in the observation event. This aspect of quantum physics implies a subjectivism on the level of individual quantum-level occurrences, since there is in quantum theory no basis for asserting the existence of the event independently of observation of it. Extension of this subjectivism to large scale, non-quantum phenomena falls within the principles of quantum theory; counter considerations that argue against such an extension are noted.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Werner Heisenberg (1958/1970). The Physicist's Conception of Nature. Westport, Conn.,Greenwood Press.
Henry Margenau (1963). Measurements and Quantum States: Part II. Philosophy of Science 30 (2):138-157.
Richard Schlegel (1967). Completeness in Science. New York, Appleton-Century-Crofts.
Joseph D. Sneed (1966). Von Neumann's Argument for the Projection Postulate. Philosophy of Science 33 (1/2):22-39.
Citations of this work BETA
Nicholas Maxwell (1982). Instead of Particles and Fields: A Micro Realistic Quantum "Smearon" Theory. [REVIEW] Foundatioins of Physics 12 (6):607-631.
Richard Schlegel (1975). Superposition in Quantum and Relativity Physics—An Interaction Interpretation of Special Relativity Theory: Part III. [REVIEW] Foundations of Physics 5 (2):197-215.
Similar books and articles
Rinat M. Nugayev (1996). Why Did the New Physics Force Out the Old? International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 10 (2):127 – 140.
Diederik Aerts (2009). Quantum Particles as Conceptual Entities: A Possible Explanatory Framework for Quantum Theory. [REVIEW] Foundations of Science 14 (4):361-411.
Ravi V. Gomatam (1999). Quantum Theory and the Observation Problem. Journal of Consciousness Studies 6 (11-12):11-12.
Richard Healey (2013). How Quantum Theory Helps Us Explain. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (1):axt031.
Bruce Rosenblum & Fred Kuttner (2008). Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness. Oxford University Press.
Gregg Jaeger & Sahotra Sarkar (2003). Coherence, Entanglement, and Reductionist Explanation in Quantum Physics,". In A. Ashtekar (ed.), Revisiting the Foundations of Relativistic Physics. 523--542.
Peter Gibbins (1987). Particles and Paradoxes: The Limits of Quantum Logic. Cambridge University Press.
Jeffrey Bub (1982). Quantum Logic, Conditional Probability, and Interference. Philosophy of Science 49 (3):402-421.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads32 ( #65,270 of 1,692,471 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #184,284 of 1,692,471 )
How can I increase my downloads?