Quantum leaps

(QM is way beyond the scope of understanding of this author, this page should be seen purely as amateur speculation for fun, and as a very broad suggestion as to the kind of thinking that may be required if it is that 'time' does not exist extra to being just a 'word' that only describes motion 'now'.

In a quantum leap we have a particle trapped in an 'energy well' which manages to make an impossible escape even though in theory it does not have enough energy to do so.


The problem is that quantum mechanics suggests the particle can 'borrow energy from  few pico seconds into the future' to make its escape - as long as it pays back the loan promptly. So timelessness has to propose a simpler explanation.


 A particle trapped in an energy well, trying to make a quantum leap, can be visualised loosely by imagining a ball trapped in a valley as shown.

This particle is trapped because it has some energy... 



but not enough to make it right over the top of the 'hill' and on to freedom.


But in theory, if the particle escapes it still has the same energy it had while trapped (it is at the same 'height')

As I understand it, in quantum mechanics we cannot say where a particle ever 'is'. But only give a probability curve for the likely hood of it being in any particular place. This means that sometimes the 'particle' has a slim likely hood of actually being on the other side of its trap. If this is the case then it seems the particle gets its freedom even though in theory it never had enough energy to do so. - This is the quantum leap.

the issue we have with it in the timeless sense it that in QM it is suggested that to make its quantum leap, a particle may 'borrow energy from the future'.

A timeless way of looking at the same scene may be to consider that perhaps by 'future' we just mean 'that which is physically ahead of a particular thing'. (if i`m on a train heading to Scotland then Scotland is likely to be in my future). Then we consider that perhaps our particle borrow some energy, not from 'a few picoseconds in the future', but just from an object some nanometres ahead of it.



The timeless quantum leap.


An alternative view is as follow





We start with a trapped particle. But perhaps as a particle tries to escape its trap, it doesn't just try to 'climb' the barrier, but it both climbs, and deforms the barrier it is trying to over come. In the same way a kid may deform part of a bean bag as they try to clamber over it.







If the particle has enough energy it could climb, and deform the barrier enough to flee the scene.



Now consider an particle approaching the trap or energy well from outside. It too may or may not have enough energy to overcome the barrier.
 But even if it does not have enough energy to overcome barrier, the particle still partially climbs, and deforms the barrier. And is then reflected away.






Now consider the two particles together.

The trapped particle happens to be climbing and deforming its barrier (hopelessly without assistance), But an outside particle also happens to be bumping into the barrier.

Together they deform the barrier enough for the trapped particle to escape.






In this case the trapped particle 'borrowed energy', or 'got help from' not from the future - but from another particle simply some distance ahead of it - and heading towards it.


If this is the case, then it would be something related to the physical distance shown in the above diagram that QM probably sees as 'the duration of time into the future that energy may be 'borrowed' from'.

m.marsden.



xxxsimplify + clarify diagrams etc

Comments