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University at Buffalo

Physics Dept.
PART IIB

1.

This is a closed book exam

2.

Calculators are allowed.

Spring 2012 Qualifying Exam

QUANTUM MECHANICS

3.
DO EACH PROBLEM IN A SEPARATE BLUE BOOK. On the cover of the blue book write
only the letter that has been assigned to you (NOT YOUR NAME) and the problem number.
4.

DO ONLY FOUR PROBLEMS.

5.
The exam was designed to be done in three hours, but you will have up to four hours, should
you need them.
Some Physical Constants
Gravitational constant
Speed of light in vacuum
Permeability of free space
Permittivity of free space
Planck's constant
Electron charge
Electron mass
Proton mass
Bohr magneton
Boltzmann's constant
Stefan-Boltzmann constant
Universal gas constant
Avogadro's number

G
c
o
o
h
e
me
mp
B
k

R
NA

=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=
=

6.673 10-11
2.998 108
4 10-7
8.854 10-12
6.626 10-34
-1.602 10-19
9.109 10-31
1.673 10-27
9.274 10-24
1.381 10-23
5.671 10-8
8.314
6.022 1023

Some Conversion Factors


1 eV
=
1.602 10-19 J
1 erg =
10-7 J
1 cal
=
4.184 J
1 gauss =
10-4 T
lu
=
(mass of C12 atom) /12 = 1.66 10-27 Kg
1 atm =
1.013 105 N/m2

N.m2/kg2
m/s
T.m/A
C2/N.m2
J.s
C
kg
kg
J/T
J/K
J/m2.s.K4
J/mol.K
/mol

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM #1

S1 S2 are placed in a constant


2

magnetic field B , as shown in the figure. The particles are kept at fixed positions at points P1
and P2 , respectively. Their magnetic moments are given by the expressions: 1 1S1 , and

Two distinguishable particles with spins S1 and S 2

2 2 S2 . Here 1 and 2 are positive constants with 1 2


(a) (6 points) Determine the eigenenergies and eignfunctions of the system assuming that
the particle do not interact.
(b) (6 points) Draw an energy diagram and indicate all the transitions induced by an AC
electromagnetic field (angular frequency ) that flip either the spin of particle 1 or the spin
of particle 2, but not both. Calculate all the possible values of .
Now assume that the particles interact weakly via a perturbation Hamiltonian of the form:
H A 1 3cos2 S1z S2 z . Here, A is a constant, is the angle that the line joining P1 and P2
forms with B , and S1z and S 2 z are the z-components of the spins S1 and S 2 , respectively.
(c) (7 points) Determine the new eigenenergies of the system.
(d) (6 points) Draw the new energy diagram. Calculate the new values of the angular
frequencies for the transitions of part b

S2

P2

S1
P1

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM 2

A 1-dimensional stream of particles with momentum hk is incident from the


negative x direction on a 1-dimensional delta function potential:
U (x) = K(x)

(a) (5 points) Write down the general solutions for the wave functions in the
regions x 0 and x 0.
(b) (10 points) Match the wave functions and their derivatives at x = 0.
(c) (10 points) Find the fraction of particles that is transmitted and the fraction that is reflected.

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM #3

The Hamiltonian of a Helium atom (ignore spin) can be written in terms of the
Hamiltonian of two Hydrogen atoms and the Coulomb interaction of the two
electrons as follows
2
2
2
2
2
= p1 Ze + p2 Ze + e
H
2m
r1
2m
r2
r12
where Z = 2 and r12 = |~x1 ~x2 | denotes the distance between the two electrons.
(a) (4 points) Determine the energy eigenvalues and eigenstates of the unperturbed Hamiltonian (r1,2 = |~x1,2 |),
2
2
2
2
0 = p1 2e + p2 2e
H
2m
r1
2m
r2

in terms of the energy eigenfunctions and eigenvalues of the Hydrogen atom.


(b) (8 points) Show that the expectation value of V = e2 /r12 with respect to
the groundstate wavefunction of H0 reads
h

5Ze2
e2
i=
r12
8a0

(c) (4 points) Consider the Coulomb interaction, V = e2 /r12 , a small perturbation and determine the ground-state energy to first non-vanishing order in
perturbation theory.
(d) (9 points) Use the Variational method to estimate the ground-state energy
As a suitable trial function use
of the Helium atom described by H.
(~x1 , ~x2 ) =

3 (r1 +r2 )/a0


,
e
a30

where denotes the variational parameter. Compare your result with the one
obtained in part c).
Note:
The following expansion of 1/|~x1 ~x2 | in terms of spherical harmonics Ylm may
be useful (r1,2 = |~x1,2 |):
P

r1l
1
m
m
Y
(
,

)Y
(
,

)
;
r
<
r
2
2
1
1
1
2
l+1
l
l
l,m 2l+1 r
1
2

= 4 P
r2l
1
m
|~x1 ~x2 |
(2 , 2 )Y m (1 , 1 ) ; r1 > r2
l+1 Y
l,m 2l+1 r
1

The wave function and energy eigenvalues of a hydrogen-like atom in spherical


coordinates reads (a0 is the Bohr radius)
(~x) = Rnl (r)Ylm (, ) ; En =

Z 2 e2
2a0 n2

with
R10 (r) =

2Z 3/2
3/2
a0

1
eZr/a0 ; Y00 (, ) =
4

Useful integrals (n > 0 and integer):


Z
n!
xn eax dx = n+1
a
0
Z
eax
xeax dx = 2 (ax 1)
a
 2

Z
x
2
2x
x2 eax dx = eax
+ 2 + 3
a
a
a

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM #4

Consider a two-dimensional simple harmonic oscillator, i.e. the Hamiltonian reads


0 = h
H
(
a1 a
1 + a
2 a
2 ) ,
which experiences a weak perturbation of the form
= (
H
a1 a
1 a
2 a
2 + a
2 a
2 a
1 a
1 )
(a) (6 points) Determine the energy eigenvalues and eigenstates of the unperturbed
0 , and discuss the degree of degeneracy of the ground-state, first,
Hamiltonian, H
second, and third excited states.
(b) (12 points) Calculate the effect of the perturbation on the energy of the three
second excited states to first and second order perturbation theory and discuss the
degree of degeneracy of the energy levels after perturbation.
(c) (7 points) Calculate the shift in energy of the four third excited states at first order
perturbation theory and discuss the degree of degeneracy of the energy levels after
including this shift.

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM #5

(a) (6 + 2 points) Suppose that n0 (n 1, 2, 3,) denote the eigenstates of a


unperturbed quantum system and En0 (n 1, 2, 3,) are the corresponding eigen
energies. A perturbation V is then introduced. Derive an expression for the
energy level of a non-degenerate eigenstate m up to second order in . Argue
that the second order term always lowers the energy of a non-degenerate ground
state.

Now consider a hydrogen atom in a uniform electric field E , which can be


treated using perturbation theory. The eigenstates of a hydrogen atom are labeled
by three quantum numbers (n,l,m). (We will ignore the spin degree of freedom.)
(b) (5 points) Calculate the first-order perturbation to the energy of a hydrogen
atom in the ground state.
(c) (6 points) Derive an expression for the first-order perturbation to the ground
state wavefunction.
1
2

(d) (6 points) The polarizability of an atom is defined by E | E |2 where

E is the change in energy of the atom in the presence of an electric field E .

Show that the polarizability of a hydrogen atom in the ground state is


0
| n010 | z | 100
|2
2e
0
En010 E100
n 1
2

Spring Qualifier 2012


Part B
QM 6

A non-relativistic electron with magnetic moment


field

At time t=0, the spin

is in a constant magnetic

is measured to be +1/2 along the z axis.

(a) (5 points) Find the probability P(0) for measuring the spin to be +1/2 along the y
axis at t=0.
(b). (10 points) Write down and solve the Schrodinger equation.
(c). (10 points) Find the probability P(t) for measuring the spin to be +1/2 along the y
axis at a later time t.
Hint: the Pauli matrices are