Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Why introduce matrix in quantum mechanics

  1. Sep 11, 2013 #1


    User Avatar

    hello,ereryone.I am a senior in china....
    Someone asked me this question,and suddlenly i have no idea.
    Please,give me some help.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 11, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 11, 2013 #2
    Because it helps solve problems.
  4. Sep 11, 2013 #3


    Staff: Mentor

    Its a natural part of a vector space's structure and associated linear transformations as any book on linear algebra will attest to. Same in QM, since its underlying space of states forms a vector space.

  5. Sep 15, 2013 #4


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    A matrix is a way to transform a vector into another vector. For example, it can rotate a vector. In QM a state vector is used to represent Quantum State so if you want to operate on that state (measure spin for example) you can use a particular type of matrix (an observable such as a spin operator) to operate on the spin state vector. Using this you can determine the measured state, and probabilities.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook