11 found
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  1. Self-Locating Uncertainty and the Origin of Probability in Everettian Quantum Mechanics.Charles T. Sebens & Sean M. Carroll - 2016 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science (1):axw004.
    A longstanding issue in attempts to understand the Everett (Many-Worlds) approach to quantum mechanics is the origin of the Born rule: why is the probability given by the square of the amplitude? Following Vaidman, we note that observers are in a position of self-locating uncertainty during the period between the branches of the wave function splitting via decoherence and the observer registering the outcome of the measurement. In this period it is tempting to regard each branch as equiprobable, but we (...)
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  2. Many Worlds, the Born Rule, and Self-Locating Uncertainty.Sean M. Carroll & Charles T. Sebens - 2014 - In Daniele C. Struppa & Jeffrey M. Tollaksen (eds.), Quantum Theory: A Two-Time Success Story. Springer. pp. 157-169.
    We provide a derivation of the Born Rule in the context of the Everett (Many-Worlds) approach to quantum mechanics. Our argument is based on the idea of self-locating uncertainty: in the period between the wave function branching via decoherence and an observer registering the outcome of the measurement, that observer can know the state of the universe precisely without knowing which branch they are on. We show that there is a uniquely rational way to apportion credence in such cases, which (...)
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  3.  52
    Quantum Mechanics as Classical Physics.Charles T. Sebens - 2015 - Philosophy of Science 82 (2):266-291.
    Here I explore a novel no-collapse interpretation of quantum mechanics that combines aspects of two familiar and well-developed alternatives, Bohmian mechanics and the many-worlds interpretation. Despite reproducing the empirical predictions of quantum mechanics, the theory looks surprisingly classical. All there is at the fundamental level are particles interacting via Newtonian forces. There is no wave function. However, there are many worlds.
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  4.  24
    Forces on Fields.Charles T. Sebens - 2018 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 63:1-11.
  5.  11
    Constructing and Constraining Wave Functions for Identical Quantum Particles.Charles T. Sebens - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 56:48-59.
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  6.  16
    Electromagnetism as Quantum Physics.Charles T. Sebens - 2019 - Foundations of Physics 49 (4):365-389.
    One can interpret the Dirac equation either as giving the dynamics for a classical field or a quantum wave function. Here I examine whether Maxwell’s equations, which are standardly interpreted as giving the dynamics for the classical electromagnetic field, can alternatively be interpreted as giving the dynamics for the photon’s quantum wave function. I explain why this quantum interpretation would only be viable if the electromagnetic field were sufficiently weak, then motivate a particular approach to introducing a wave function for (...)
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  7.  17
    How Electrons Spin.Charles T. Sebens - 2019 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 68:40-50.
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  8.  93
    Killer Collapse: Empirically Probing the Philosophically Unsatisfactory Region of GRW.Charles T. Sebens - 2015 - Synthese 192 (8):2599-2615.
    GRW theory offers precise laws for the collapse of the wave function. These collapses are characterized by two new constants, \ and \ . Recent work has put experimental upper bounds on the collapse rate, \ . Lower bounds on \ have been more controversial since GRW begins to take on a many-worlds character for small values of \ . Here I examine GRW in this odd region of parameter space where collapse events act as natural disasters that destroy branches (...)
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  9.  4
    Particles, fields, and the measurement of electron spin.Charles T. Sebens - forthcoming - Synthese:1-33.
    This article compares treatments of the Stern–Gerlach experiment across different physical theories, building up to a novel analysis of electron spin measurement in the context of classical Dirac field theory. Modeling the electron as a classical rigid body or point particle, we can explain why the entire electron is always found at just one location on the detector but we cannot explain why there are only two locations where the electron is ever found. Using non-relativistic or relativistic quantum mechanics, we (...)
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  10.  8
    Putting Positrons Into Classical Dirac Field Theory.Charles T. Sebens - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 70:8-18.
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  11.  30
    The Mass of the Gravitational Field.Charles T. Sebens - forthcoming - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axz002.
    By mass-energy equivalence, the gravitational field has a relativistic mass density proportional to its energy density. I seek to better understand this mass of the gravitational field by asking whether it plays three traditional roles of mass: the role in conservation of mass, the inertial role, and the role as source for gravitation. The difficult case of general relativity is compared to the more straightforward cases of Newtonian gravity and electromagnetism by way of gravitoelectromagnetism, an intermediate theory of gravity that (...)
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