RT Journal Article
SR Electronic
T1 Decoherence and its role in the modern measurement problem
JF Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical,
Physical and Engineering Sciences
JO Philos Transact A Math Phys Eng Sci
FD The Royal Society
SP 4576
OP 4593
DO 10.1098/rsta.2011.0490
VO 370
IS 1975
A1 Wallace, David
YR 2012
UL http://rsta.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/370/1975/4576.abstract
AB Decoherence is widely felt to have something to do with the quantum measurement problem, but getting clear on just what is made difficult by the fact that the ‘measurement problem’, as traditionally presented in foundational and philosophical discussions, has become somewhat disconnected from the conceptual problems posed by real physics. This, in turn, is because quantum mechanics as discussed in textbooks and in foundational discussions has become somewhat removed from scientific practice, especially where the analysis of measurement is concerned. This paper has two goals: firstly (§§1–2), to present an account of how quantum measurements are actually dealt with in modern physics (hint: it does not involve a collapse of the wave function) and to state the measurement problem from the perspective of that account; and secondly (§§3–4), to clarify what role decoherence plays in modern measurement theory and what effect it has on the various strategies that have been proposed to solve the measurement problem.