# Definitions for **quantum mechanics**

### This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word **quantum mechanics**

### Random House Webster's College Dictionary

quan′tum mechan′ics(n.)

(used with a sing. v.) a quantum theory of the mechanics of atoms, molecules, and other physical systems subject to the uncertainty principle.

**Category:**Physics

#### Origin of **quantum mechanics**:

1920–25

quan′tum-me•chan′i•cal(adj.)

### Princeton's WordNet

quantum mechanics(noun)

the branch of quantum physics that accounts for matter at the atomic level; an extension of statistical mechanics based on quantum theory (especially the Pauli exclusion principle)

### Wiktionary

quantum mechanics(Noun)

The branch of physics which studies matter and energy at the level of atoms and other elementary particles, and substitutes probabilistic mechanisms for classical Newtonian ones.

quantum mechanics(Noun)

Something overly complicated or detailed.

### Freebase

Quantum mechanics

Quantum mechanics is a branch of physics which deals with physical phenomena at microscopic scales, where the action is on the order of the Planck constant. Quantum mechanics departs from classical mechanics primarily at the quantum realm of atomic and subatomic length scales. Quantum mechanics provides a mathematical description of much of the dual particle-like and wave-like behavior and interactions of energy and matter. In advanced topics of quantum mechanics, some of these behaviors are macroscopic and emerge at only extreme energies or temperatures. The name quantum mechanics derives from the observation that some physical quantities can change only in discrete amounts, and not in a continuous way. For example, the angular momentum of an electron bound to an atom or molecule is quantized. In the context of quantum mechanics, the wave–particle duality of energy and matter and the uncertainty principle provide a unified view of the behavior of photons, electrons, and other atomic-scale objects. The mathematical formulations of quantum mechanics are abstract. A mathematical function known as the wavefunction provides information about the probability amplitude of position, momentum, and other physical properties of a particle. Mathematical manipulations of the wavefunction usually involve the bra-ket notation, which requires an understanding of complex numbers and linear functionals. The wavefunction treats the object as a quantum harmonic oscillator, and the mathematics is akin to that describing acoustic resonance. Many of the results of quantum mechanics are not easily visualized in terms of classical mechanics—for instance, the ground state in a quantum mechanical model is a non-zero energy state that is the lowest permitted energy state of a system, as opposed to a more "traditional" system that is thought of as simply being at rest, with zero kinetic energy. Instead of a traditional static, unchanging zero state, quantum mechanics allows for far more dynamic, chaotic possibilities, according to John Wheeler.

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