Can someone explain what Eigenfrequency is? Trying to explain it to someone.

  • Thread starter nukeman
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  • #1
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I have not got to this point in Physics yet, but I am trying to do a little research project on the side and this came up within the group (Yet no one really knew what they were talking about)

Someone asked if it applies at all on a quantum level?

Basically what we are trying to do is measure and change the frequency of a membrane receptor in a biological organism. Would eigenfrequency apply at all in anyway what so ever?
 

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  • #2
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Are you talking about the natural frequencies of the membrane structure? If you're trying to change the frequency, the easiest way is to alter the stiffness of the material. Not exactly sure what you're asking.
 
  • #3
Simon Bridge
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You'd get eigenfrequencies as modes in a quantized oscillator.
Look up "eigenvalue".

I'd imagine that an organism will be on the large side for quantum effects - different parts of a macroscopic membrane would have different eigenfrequencies and the whole lot would average out to the classical behavior.
 
  • #4
Nabeshin
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You'd get eigenfrequencies as modes in a quantized oscillator.
Look up "eigenvalue".

I'd imagine that an organism will be on the large side for quantum effects - different parts of a macroscopic membrane would have different eigenfrequencies and the whole lot would average out to the classical behavior.
Well it doesn't need to be a quantized oscillator at all. Just solving the classical harmonic oscillator the frequency solutions are eigenvalues (since you're essentially diagonalizing a matrix).
 
  • #5
Simon Bridge
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Yeah - I had my hind brain nudging me on that ever since I wrote down "modes".
I think Im mixing up the two parts of the question.
 
  • #6
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QM effects on the scale of a cell would be highly improbable, to an extent that most people would regard as impossible.

There's a bit of confusion here because the term eigenfrequency applies to any oscillating system - not just QM. So the answer is 'yes' or 'no' depending on how you interpret the question.
 

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