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Parity of a wavefunction

  • Thread starter opous
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  • #1
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Can anyone help me understand what is meant by the "parity of a wavefunction"?

I know in terms of even/odd parity, that:

[tex]P \Psi(x,y,z) = \pm \Psi(x,y,z)[/tex]

ie, P = +/- 1

But I don't know what "parity of a wavefunction" physically means...
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
pam
455
1
The P operator turns [tex]{\vec r}\rightarrow -{\vec r}[/tex].
 
Last edited:
  • #3
malawi_glenn
Science Advisor
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you can also relate this to ordninary functions.

P(cos(x)) = cos(-x) = cos(x) ; so cos is an even function -> Symmetric

P(sin(x)) = sin(-x) = -sin(x) ; so sin is an odd function -> Anti-Symmetric
 

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