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Mathematical tools for quantum mechanics

  1. Aug 5, 2012 #1
    I am currently reading the book on quantum mechanics by N.Zettili. It's really a good book but has a lot of mathematical stuff which I am not able to absorb. There's a whole chapter on mathematical tools but it is difficult to.understand. Can anyone suggest me book or text on mathematics as prerequisite for quantum mechanics?
     
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  3. Aug 5, 2012 #2

    chiro

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    Hey sodaboy7.

    It would help the readers if you outlined your prior mathematical experience and any courses that you have taken, especially if they are calculus and linear algebra courses.
     
  4. Aug 5, 2012 #3
    Sure. I have a firm grip on high school mathematics and 2 semesters of engineering mathematics (and 3 sem is going on). It will be better if book/text is meant for I year or II year Undergraduates.
     
  5. Aug 5, 2012 #4

    chiro

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    Have you done multivariable calculus, differential equations, and linear algebra?
     
  6. Aug 5, 2012 #5
    Yes. Done with it.
     
  7. Aug 5, 2012 #6
    I read Zettili with same preparation. I had no problem understanding it.
     
  8. Aug 5, 2012 #7
    Maybe my coursework is elementary.
     
  9. Aug 5, 2012 #8
    From personal experience, I found that most concepts from Linear Algebra and some analysis (orthogonality of functions) need to be coldly understood. That math chapter in Zettili is important as he uses the techniques from it in later chapters without many (or with very brief) elaborations.

    However, if you can get through it, you will come out stronger on the other side. He probably has the best explanation of the bra-ket notation out there.
     
  10. Aug 5, 2012 #9
    Perhaps, it is the Physics that you don't understand? You can't just jump right into QM without a background in Physics.
     
  11. Aug 5, 2012 #10
    Try Shankars book - I found it a lot easier to learn from than Zettilli..
    As for preperation; linear algebra. Linear algebra is where the real meat of the subject is, the calculus, mindless churning out solutions to PDEs, part of it isn't where the understanding lies.5
    Gilbert Strang - Introduction to Linear Algebra
    Hoffman - Linear Algebra
    Steve Roman - Advanced Linear Algebra
    Pick one of those depending on your current skill level (although if you're already at hoffman level the new material in romans book won't really add much).
     
  12. Aug 5, 2012 #11
    To give reference to my level I would say I am almost done with calculus by Thomas and Finney.
     
  13. Aug 5, 2012 #12
    No. I don't have any problem there. But I have not studied relativity yet. So should I go for relativity before QM?
     
  14. Aug 5, 2012 #13
    QM is essentially a non-relativistic theory so SR is not an necessary pre-req.

    In terms of Zetilli's Chapter 2, I agree that there's quite a bit of material in there and if you haven't taken a serious course in linear algebra covering a good deal of material on self-adjoint operators, you might find the material too condensed as he only states theorems without proving it and thus there's a lot of facts packed in one page.
     
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