What is the difference between quantum mechanics and quantum physics?

  1. I'm a grade 10 student and very much interested in physics. Just wondering the difference between quantum mechanics and quantum physics. Are they synonyms? What would you expect to study in quantum physics and quantum mechanics?

    Help please..
  2. jcsd
  3. chroot

    chroot 10,427
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    "Quantum physics" is an umbrella term that refers to any physical theory based on the notion of quantizing some quantity, like energy.

    Quantum physics begins with quantum mechanics, but proceeds into quantum electrodynamics (the quantum theory of electromagnetism), quantum chromodynamics (the quantum theory of nuclear forces), and quantum geometroydynamics (quantum theories of gravity, such as string theory, which are incomplete and under tremendous active study).

    - Warren
  4. jtbell

    Staff: Mentor

    I think of "quantum mechanics" as being a subset of "quantum physics." Loosely speaking, quantum mechanics is the theoretical stuff, whereas quantum physics also includes the experimental and observational stuff.
  5. 'Quantum mechanics. The dream stuff is made of'
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