Double slit-experiment confusion

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Main Question or Discussion Point

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schrödinger_equation

"Two-slit diffraction is a famous example of the strange behaviors that waves regularly display, that are not intuitively associated with particles. The overlapping waves from the two slits cancel each other out in some locations, and reinforce each other in other locations, causing a complex pattern to emerge. Intuitively, one would not expect this pattern from firing a single particle at the slits, because the particle should pass through one slit or the other, not a complex overlap of both."

since the Schrödinger equation is a wave equation, a single particle fired through a double-slit does show this same pattern (figure on right). The experiment must be repeated many times for the complex pattern to emerge."

Why does it need to be repeated many times for the pattern to emerge when the evolution is continious?

It does not state why in the article.

Thanks in advance.
 
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Answers and Replies

  • #2
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The detectors we use will produce a single "dot" per particle. How can you derive pattern from a single dot?
A number of dots is required to see the pattern. That's what they are saying.
 
  • #3
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The detectors we use will produce a single "dot" per particle. How can you derive pattern from a single dot?
A number of dots is required to see the pattern. That's what they are saying.
It's the way it was phrased that confused me.
 
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Am I correct in understanding that the many paths/routes/avenues a photon ( or any subatomic or very small particle ) can take prior to even being shot out of the photon gun in this experiment, is described in physics using math as waveforms? The waveforms represent a concept and the math describes the concept, but there is no true reality of a waveform - it is not a physical entity. So the waveforms are already 'there' prior to the photon being shot out of the gun, and the waveforms have already 'created' all the pathways the photon can take, hence the diffraction pattern. It's like a different type of reality that we cannot yet explain. Only when you interact with the experiment ( eg - using a detector ) does a reality emerge, which we can understand with our known classical reality of physics.
 
  • #5
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When the photon exits the device, it becomes part of the photon field. It can go through both slits and land in a classically incompatible spot on the plate. This is because 'particles' in the lowest scales are restricted from manifesting as classical by the HUP. They cannot have definite properties at all times or electrons would lose energy and spiral into the nucleus. They seemingly can have definite properties, when they get big enough or gain huge energy. It's weird that classical mechanics loses its grip in the micro scale. Lots of questions aren't sufficiently well answered to everybody's liking(there are few issues with qm, but there are many wrt to understanding the macro world now).
 

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