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Disorder-induced quantum-to-classical transition, or how the world becomes classical

Abstract : Decoherence theory explains how quantum mechanics gives rise to classical mechanics through the entanglement of a quantum system's evolution with the degrees of freedom of the environment. The present article explores another pathway from the quantum to the classical behaviour. We consider a spinless particle interacting with a disordered landscape of potential energy. The matter-wave evolution is handled within time-dependent quantum statistical mechanics, in which the wave function is replaced by a Wigner function defined in position-momentum space. Upon zooming out to scales exceeding the correlation length of the disorder, it is found that the description only involves the state populations as defined in classical statistical physics. Quantum coherence effects are significant only over smaller spatial scales, where they give rise to a noise superimposing on the classical description. The waning of coherence, which reflects the emergence of classicality, is due to the multiple scattering of matter waves; and the framework may be viewed as a stochastic wave mechanics.
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https://hal-univ-paris.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03666443
Contributor : Eric Bringuier Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Thursday, May 12, 2022 - 2:18:49 PM
Last modification on : Friday, May 20, 2022 - 3:11:49 AM

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Eric Bringuier. Disorder-induced quantum-to-classical transition, or how the world becomes classical. EPJ Web of Conferences, EDP Sciences, 2022, 263, pp.01011. ⟨10.1051/epjconf/202226301011⟩. ⟨hal-03666443⟩

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