Exact classical limit of the quantum bouncer
División Académica de Ciencias Básicas, Universidad Juárez Autónoma de Tabasco, 86690, Cunduacán, Tabasco, México
2 Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 04510, Ciudad de México, México
Accepted: 22 November 2022
Published online: 5 December 2022
In this paper, we develop a systematic approach to determine the classical limit of periodic quantum systems and we applied it successfully to the problem of the quantum bouncer. It is well known that, for periodic systems, the classical probability density does not follow the quantum probability density. Instead, it follows the local average in the limit of large quantum numbers. Guided by this fact, and expressing both the classical and quantum probability densities as Fourier expansions, here we show that local averaging implies that the Fourier coefficients approach each other in the limit of large quantum numbers. The leading term in the quantum Fourier coefficient yields the exact classical limit, but subdominant terms also emerge, which we may interpret as quantum corrections at the macroscopic level. We apply this theory to the problem of a particle bouncing under the gravity field and show that the classical probability density is exactly recovered from the quantum distribution. We show that for realistic systems, the quantum corrections are strongly suppressed (by a factor of ) with respect to the classical result.
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