Spin quasi-distribution functions

Foundations of Physics 24 (1):85-107 (1994)
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Two-classes of phase-space spin quasi-distribution functions are introduced and discussed. The first class of these distributions is based on the delta function construction. It is shown that such a construction can be carried out for an arbitrary spin s and an arbitrary ordering of the spin operators. The second class of the spin distributions is constructed with the help of the spin coherent states. The connection of the spin coherent states to the Stratonovich formalism is established and discussed. It is shown that the c-number phase-space description of quantum fluctuations provides a simple statistical picture of quantum fluctuations of spinoperators in terms of random directions on a unit sphere. For quantum states of the spin system the statistics of these random orientations is given by non-positive spin quasi-distribution functions. It is shown that the application of these spin quasi-distribution functions to the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen correlations provide an insight into the quantum theory of measurement



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