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+/- wave function

  1. Oct 25, 2014 #1
    I am curious if the constants for wave functions for a particle in a box can be both +/-.....because constants I've applied for wave functions have always been +....
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2014 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    Wave functions that differ only by an overall phase factor ##e^{i \phi}## represent the same physical state, as no observable changes due to this complex phase. Hence, multiplying the constant by ##-1## will not change the physics. Taking the constant to be real and positive is often simply a matter of convention.
  4. Oct 25, 2014 #3
    Thank you for the explanation!
  5. Oct 28, 2014 #4
    Hi guys,

    Just started studying physics hence I obviously have a silly question for you.

    Why the wave function Ψ (x,y,z) must be square. It seems wave functions themselves have no meaning if they don't have a physical meaning.

    Thanks a lot in advance,
  6. Oct 28, 2014 #5


    Staff: Mentor

  7. Oct 28, 2014 #6
    Thanks Bill. I will check it out.
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