September 15, 2013 at 8:12 pm

If the Multiparticle Schrodinger Equation Were Easy to Solve, then Chemistry Would be Too Boring to Support Life, Sept. 18

Dr. Martin Mohlenkamp

Dr. Martin Mohlenkamp

Dr. Martin J. Mohlenkamp, Associate Professor and Graduate Chair of Mathematics, will present a Mathematics Colloquium on the topic “If the Multiparticle Schrodinger Equation were easy to solve, then Chemistry would be too boring to support life,” at 4:10 p.m., Sept. 18, Morton Hall, 122.

The multiparticle Schrodinger equation is the basic governing equation in quantum mechanics. Many person-centuries and cpu-millennia have been spent constructing approximate solutions to it. We should be glad it is so hard to solve because its subtle behavior allows the rich Chemistry upon which life depends,” he says in his abstract.

“I will describe the multiparticle Schrodinger equation and explain (some of) the reasons it is difficult to solve: high-dimensionality, antisymmetry, scaling to large systems, inter-particle cusps, singular potentials and nuclear cusps, odd function spaces, etc. I will also describe our efforts to overcome these difficulties.”

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