quantum theory(redirected from Matrix mechanics)
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1. A theory in physics based on the principle that matter and energy have the properties of both particles and waves, created to explain the radiation of energy from a blackbody, the photoelectric effect, and the Bohr theory, and now used to account for a wide range of physical phenomena, including the existence of discrete packets of energy and matter, the uncertainty principle, and the exclusion principle.
2. Any of various specific applications of this theory.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
(Atomic Physics) a theory concerning the behaviour of physical systems based on Planck's idea that they can only possess certain properties, such as energy and angular momentum, in discrete amounts (quanta). The theory later developed in several equivalent mathematical forms based on De Broglie's theory and on the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. See wave mechanics
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. a theory for predicting the discrete energy states of atoms and of radiation.
2. any theory that describes a force or field using the methods of quantum mechanics: a quantum theory of gravitation.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
A theory in physics based on the principle that matter and energy behave both as particles and as waves. According to this theory, matter and energy are composed of tiny units of electromagnetic energy called quanta. Quantum theory is used to explain such phenomena as the photoelectric effect and the uncertainty principle. ♦ Another term for quantum theory is quantum mechanics, which also refers specifically to the use of quantum theory in studying the structure and behavior of atoms and molecules.
The American Heritage® Student Science Dictionary, Second Edition. Copyright © 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The theory that electromagnetic radiation consists of units called quanta or photons.
Dictionary of Unfamiliar Words by Diagram Group Copyright © 2008 by Diagram Visual Information Limited
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|Noun||1.||quantum theory - (physics) a physical theory that certain properties occur only in discrete amounts (quanta)|
scientific theory - a theory that explains scientific observations; "scientific theories must be falsifiable"
natural philosophy, physics - the science of matter and energy and their interactions; "his favorite subject was physics"
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