Skip to main content
European Commission logo print header

Article Category

Content archived on 2023-03-23

Article available in the following languages:


Conference in french : Quantum mechanics : historical development, interpretations by Franck LALOE

Franck LALOE is emeritus research director of the Kastler Brossel Laboratory at the Ecole Normale Superieure (ENS), Paris, France

Place: Maison de l'AX, 5 rue Descartes, 75005, Paris, France Date: March 2, 2015 Time: 17:00 Summary: Quantum mechanics is one of the most successful theories of all physics. Its predictions have been verified in a huge number of situations, sometimes with a fantastic accuracy of 10^(-12). Historically, quantum mechanics was developed in several stages, each of them implying a different interpretation, sometimes opposite of the others. A "standard" version then emerged, in the line of the contributions of von Neumann and Dirac, which is the version generally found in textbooks. Nevertheless, real conceptual difficulties remain: we are far from a universal consensus concerning the best way to interpret the nature of the wave function, the measurement process, etc. and their possible relation with "physical reality". This is the reason why many interpretations of quantum mechanics have been proposed. A few will be described during the talk: the Copenhagen interpretation (Bohr), the statistical interpretation (Einstein, Ballentine, etc.) as well as the three most famous non-standard interpretations: dBB (de Broglie Bohm), GRW/CSL (Stochastic Schrödinger dynamics) and Everett (sometimes described as 'many worlds'). References : Franck LALOE, Do we really understand quantum mechanics? Cambridge University Press (2012).