Volume 13, no. 3Pages 5 - 16

On a Model of Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking in Quantum Mechanics

A. Restuccia, A. Sotomayor, V.A. Strauss
Our goal is to find a model for the phenomenon of spontaneous symmetry breaking arising in one dimensional quantum mechanical problems. For this purpose we consider boundary value problems related with two interior points of the real line, symmetric with respect to the origin. This approach can be treated as a presence of singular potentials containing shifted Dirac delta functions and their derivatives. From mathematical point of view we use a technique of selfadjoint extensions applied to a symmetric differential operator which has a domain containing smooth functions vanishing in two mentioned above points. We calculate the resolvent of corresponding extension and investigate its behavior if the interior points change their positions. The domain of these extensions can contain some functions that have non differentiability or discontinuity at the points mentioned above, the latter can be interpreted as an appearance of singular potentials centered at the same points. Next, broken-symmetry bound states are discovered. More precisely, for a particular entanglement of boundary conditions, there is a ground state, generating a spontaneous symmetry breaking, stable under the phenomenon of decoherence provoked from external fluctuations. We discuss the model in the context of the "chiral'' broken-symmetry states of molecules like NH_3. We show that within a Hilbert space approach a spontaneous symmetry breaking disappears if the distance between the mentioned above interior points tends to zero.
Full text
operator theory; resolvent; solution of wave equation; bound states; spontaneous and radiative symmetry breaking.
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