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Time's Arrow and Irreversibility in Time‐Asymmetric Quantum Mechanics

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Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to analyze time-asymmetric quantum mechanics with respect to the problems of irreversibility and of time's arrow. We begin with arguing that both problems are conceptually different. Then, we show that, contrary to a common opinion, the theory's ability to describe irreversible quantum processes is not a consequence of the semigroup evolution laws expressing the non-time-reversal invariance of the theory. Finally, we argue that time-asymmetric quantum mechanics, either in Prigogine's version or in Bohm's version, does not solve the problem of the arrow of time because it does not supply a substantial and theoretically founded criterion for distinguishing between the two directions of time.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/02698590500460806

Affiliations: 1: CONICET—Instituto de Astronomía y Física del Espacio, Argentina 2: Universidad de Valladolid, Spain 3: CONICET‐Universidad National de Quimes, Argentina

Publication date: 2005-10-01

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