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Finding if $S_{x}, \; S_{y}, \; and \; S_{z}$ Commute: Instructor's Guide

Main Ideas

Students' Task

Estimated Time:

Prerequisite Knowledge


Activity: Introduction

Divide students into groups to work out whether the spin operators commute.

Activity: Student Conversations

Activity: Wrap-up

Groups should find that none of the quantum operators commute and therefore do not share the same basis for their respective eigenvectors. Because of this, it provides mathematical evidence for many properties that have so far been only observed. Since none of them commute, none of them have the same base, nor can the spin operators be measured simultaneously.


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