The Physical Quantities in the Random Data of Neutron Interferometry

  • J. Summhammer
Conference paper
Part of the Fundamental Theories of Physics book series (FTPH, volume 24)


This work consists of two parts. In the first section a review of typical neutron interferometry experiments is given, in which three different interactions of the neutron are exploited: nuclear, magnetic and gravitational. In all cases the familiar sinusoidal interference pattern is obtained. In the second section we start from the observation, that the primary data in neutron interferometry, as in all of quantum physics, are random ″clicks″ in detectors. In the case of the interferometer each ″click″ is just a yes-no answer, since there are only two detectors. The ″clicks″ are related in a probabilistic manner to the underlying physical quantity, the phase shift. We identify criteria how possible physical quantities can be derived from primary data. Without referring to quantum theory at all we are led step by step to the cosine law between probability and related physical quantity and ultimately to the wavefunctions present at the two detectors.


Physical Quantity Random Data Phase Plate Nuclear Potential Error Interval 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Summhammer
    • 1
  1. 1.Atominstitut der österreichischen UniversitätenViennaAustria

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