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Observables, disassembled

Roberts, Bryan W. (2018) Observables, disassembled. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics, 63. pp. 150-162. ISSN 1355-2198

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.shpsb.2018.02.002


How should we characterise the observable aspects of quantum theory? This paper argues that philosophers and physicists should jettison a standard dogma: that observables must be represented by self-adjoint or Hermitian operators. Four classes of non-standard observables are identified: normal operators, symmetric operators, real-spectrum operators, and none of these. The philosophical and physical implications of each are explored.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2018 Elsevier Ltd.
Divisions: Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Sets: Departments > Philosophy, Logic and Scientific Method
Research centres and groups > Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science (CPNSS)
Date Deposited: 20 Mar 2018 14:14
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2019 11:45

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