01_580_intro_notes - Physics 580 Handout 1 24 August 2010...

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Unformatted text preview: Physics 580 Handout 1 24 August 2010 Quantum Mechanics I webusers.physics.illinois.edu/ goldbart/ Introductory Notes Prof. P. M. Goldbart 3135 (& 2115) ESB University of Illinois Quantum Mechanics I is the first of a sequence of two graduate-level courses designed to teach you both the principles and some applications of quantum mechanics. The subject is very well developed and there is a lot of material to cover. Therefore I shall have to assume that you have had some exposure to quantum ideas, perhaps through a course or two at the undergraduate level. In particular, I shall assume that you have had some experience with wave mechanics, and with solving the Schr odinger equation for systems such as the hydrogen atom and the harmonic oscillator. If you do not have such a background it is possible that you will find the course rather challenging. Please come and talk to me if youre in this category, especially if you feel you need to take this course now. Its my firm belief that the circle of ideas developed in Quantum Mechanics I and II are amongst the highest of the high-water marks in human thought. My first encounter with this material was truly exhilarating. I hope you find yourself feeling the same way about quantum theory. For some of you this will be your first year in graduate school and (especially if you are teaching for the first time) you may initially find the experience quite bewildering. Indeed, the fact that you will get used to it may be dicult for you to believe. Nevertheless, let me stress at the outset that if at any time you find yourself having serious diculties, please dont hesitate to come and see me or call me, either during oce hours or at any other time. You can also reach me by e-mail at goldbart@illinois.edu . There is a course web site, reachable from webusers.physics.illinois.edu/ goldbart/ . From it you can obtain my lecture notes, homework handouts, etc . You can also reach a useful page, Course News , on which I shall post various notices pertaining to the course ( e.g. , times and locations of oce hours and make-up lectures, any typographical errors in homeworks). Its worth getting into the habit of checking this page from time to time.homeworks)....
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01_580_intro_notes - Physics 580 Handout 1 24 August 2010...

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