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quantum mechanics - Computer Definition
The branch of physics developed in the first part of the 20th century that was highly successful in explaining the behavior of atoms, molecules and nuclei. Developed between 1900 and 1930 and combined with the general and special theory of relativity, it revolutionized the field of physics. The new concepts, which were the particle properties of radiation, the wave properties of matter, quantization of physical properties and the idea that one can no longer know exactly where a single particle such as an electron is at any one instance were necessary to explain all of the new experimental evidence that was available at the time. For example, quantum mechanics explains the behavior of semiconductors which are used to make the myriad devices we use every day. See wave-particle duality and quantum state. Following are the important contributors to the foundation of quantum mechanics and the principles they uncovered. Year Researcher Contribution 1901 Planck Blackbody radiation 1905 Einstein Photoelectric effect 1913 Bohr Spectra theory 1922 Compton Photon scattering 1924 Pauli Exclusion principle 1925 de Broglie Matter waves 1926 Schroedinger Wave equation 1927 Heisenberg Uncertainty principle 1927 Davison & Wave properties of Germer electrons 1927 Born Interpretation of the wavefunction
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quantum mechanics - Cultural Definition
The branch of physics that deals with the behavior of matter at the level of the atom, the nucleus, and the elementary particle. At this level, energy, mass, momentum, and other quantities do not vary continuously, as they do in the large-scale world, but come in discrete units, or quanta. (See Bohr atom and photon.)
quantum mechanics - Science Definition
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