A Review of The Algebraic Approaches to Quantum Mechanics. Some Appraisals of Their Theoretical Importance

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The main algebraic foundations of quantum mechanics are quickly reviewed. They have been suggested since the birth of this theory till up to last years. They are the following ones: Heisenberg-Born- Jordan’s (1925), Weyl’s (1928), Dirac’s (1930), von Neumann’s (1936), Segal’s (1947), T.F. Jordan’s (1986), Morchio and Strocchi’s (2009) and Buchholz and Fregenhagen’s (2019). Four cases are stressed: 1) the misinterpretation of Dirac’s algebraic foundation; 2) von Neumann’s ‘conversion’ from the analytic approach of Hilbert space to the algebraic approach of the rings of operators; 3) Morchio and Strocchi’s improving Dirac’s analogy between commutators and Poisson Brackets into an exact equivalence; 4) the recent foundation of quantum mechanics upon the algebra of perturbations. Some considerations on alternating theoretical importance of the algebraic approach in the history of QM are offered. The level of formalism has increased from the mere introduction of matrices to group theory and C*-algebras but has not led to a definition of the foundations of physics; in particular, an algebraic formulation of QM organized as a problem-based theory and an exclusive use of constructive mathematics is still to be discovered.
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Archival date: 2021-09-17
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