Geometric Quantum Mechanics

Brody, D C and Hughston, L P. 2001. Geometric Quantum Mechanics. Journal of Geometry and Physics, 38(1), 19 - 53. ISSN 0393-0440 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The manifold of pure quantum states can be regarded as a complex projective space endowed with the unitary-invariant Fubini-Study metric. According to the principles of geometric quantum mechanics, the physical characteristics of a given quantum system can be represented by geometrical features that are preferentially identified in this complex manifold. Here we construct a number of examples of such features as they arise in the state spaces for spin 1/2, spin 1, spin 3/2 and spin 2 systems, and for pairs of spin 1/2 systems. A study is then undertaken on the geometry of entangled states. A locally invariant measure is assigned to the degree of entanglement of a given state for a general multi-particle system, and the properties of this measure are analysed for the entangled states of a pair of spin 1/2 particles. With the specification of a quantum Hamiltonian, the resulting Schrodinger trajectories induce an isometry of the Fubini-Study manifold, and hence also an isometry of each of the energy surfaces generated by level values of the expectation of the Hamiltonian. For a generic quantum evolution, the corresponding Killing trajectory is quasiergodic on a toroidal subspace of the energy surface through the initial state. When a dynamical trajectory is lifted orthogonally to Hilbert space, it induces a geometric phase shift on the wave function. The uncertainty of an observable in a given state is the length of the gradient vector of the level surface of the expectation of the observable in that state, a fact that allows us to calculate higher order corrections to the Heisenberg relations. A general mixed state is determined by a probability density function on the state space, for which the associated first moment is the density matrix. The advantage of a general state is in its applicability in various attempts to go beyond the standard quantum theory, some of which admit a natural phase-space characterisation.

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Identification Number (DOI):


Quantum phase space, Quantum measurement and entanglement, Generalised quantum mechanics, Kibble–Weinberg theory, Quantum information and uncertainty

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7 March 2001Published Online
April 2001Published
7 March 2001Accepted

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Date Deposited:

04 Feb 2022 14:32

Last Modified:

09 Feb 2022 10:37

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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