Subsystems and Independence in Relativistic Microscopic Physics

Stephen J. Summers
December 08, 2008
The analyzability of the universe into subsystems requires a concept of the "independence" of the subsystems, of which the relativistic quantum world supports many distinct notions which either coincide or are trivial in the classical setting. The multitude of such notions and the complex relations between them will only be adumbrated here. The emphasis of the discussion is placed upon the warrant for and the consequences of a particular notion of subsystem independence, which, it is proposed, should be viewed as primary and, it is argued, provides a reasonable framework within which to sensibly speak of relativistic quantum subsystems.
open access link
@article{Summers:2008zza, author = "Summers, Stephen J.", title = "{Subsystems and Independence in Relativistic Microscopic Physics}", journal = "Stud. Hist. Phil. Sci.", volume = "B40", year = "2009", pages = "133-141", doi = "10.1016/j.shpsb.2009.02.002", eprint = "0812.1517", archivePrefix = "arXiv", primaryClass = "quant-ph", SLACcitation = "%%CITATION = ARXIV:0812.1517;%%" }

Keywords: 
subsystems, relativistic quantum theory