Quantization of energy

  • #1
Why this quantization of energy term occur in quantum mech?

Why this "quantization of energy" term occur in quantum mech? Is there any real physical example of quantization of energy? or its just a thought? As i know that if a particle is bound in between two potential walls then the energy of the particle is quantized i.e. E<V(x).
 
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  • #2
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Energy of electron in atomic orbital is quantized. That is a real physical example.

For more details you can check past discussions on this topic. You can find them at the bottom of this page under "Similar discussions for: Quantization of energy".
 
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  • #3
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A convenient way to think about 'quantization' of energy is via Planck's constant, h.
see for example:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_Of_Action

[look for 'h' in the early formulas....]

... [Max] Planck discovered that physical action ...... must be some multiple of a very small quantity (later to be named the "quantum of action" and now called Planck's constant). This inherent granularity is counterintuitive in the everyday world, where it is possible to "make things a little bit hotter" or "move things a little bit faster". This is because the quanta of action are very, very small in comparison to everyday macroscopic human experience.....
So quantum actions are discrete, take place in small 'bumps', are not continuous. Another example is the kinetic energy of photoelectric electrons:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photoelectric_effect#Mathematical_description

note the 'h' within the formula.....
 
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  • #4
tom.stoer
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Why this "quantization of energy" term occur in quantum mech? Is there any real physical example of quantization of energy? or its just a thought? As i know that if a particle is bound in between two potential walls then the energy of the particle is quantized i.e. E<V(x).
This is observed experimentally in atomic spectra which show discrete spectral lines associated with discrete energy differences.ä

And it is derived mathematically via the Schrödinger equation having discrete eigenvalues for bound states. So the discrete energy levels in atomic spectra can be calculated (in most cases numerically)
 
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