The classical limit and spontaneous symmetry breaking in algebraic quantum theory
Christiaan Van De Ven
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Submission date: 26. Apr. 2022
MSC-Numbers: 46L65, 81R40, 81S10
Keywords and phrases: Algebraic quantum theory, Operator algebras, spontaneous symmetry breaking, Classical limit, Deformation quantization, Emergence
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In this paper an overview of some recent developments on the classical limit and spontaneous symmetry breaking (SSB) in algebraic quantum theory is given. In such works, based on the theory of C∗-algebras, the concept of the classical limit has been formalized in a complete algebraic manner. Additionally, since this setting allows for commutative as well as non-commutative C∗-algebras, and hence for classical and quantum theories, it provides an excellent framework to study SBB as an emergent phenomenon when transitioning from the quantum to the classical world by turning oﬀ a semi-classical parameter. We summarize the main results and show that this algebraic approach sheds new light on the connection between the classical and the quantum realm, where particular emphasis is placed on the role of SSB in Theory versus Nature. To this end a detailed analysis is carried out and illustrated with three diﬀerent physical models: Schrödinger operators, mean-ﬁeld quantum spin systems and the Bose-Hubbard model.