Beginning with ordinary quantum mechanics for spinless particles, together with the hypothesis that all experimental measurements consist of positional measurements at different times, we characterize directly a class of nonlinear quantum theories physically equivalent to linear quantum mechanics through nonlinear gauge transformations. We show that under two physically motivated assumptions, these transformations are uniquely determined: they are exactly the group of time-dependent, nonlinear gauge transformations introduced previously tor a family of nonlinear Schrödinger equations. The general equation in this family, including terms considered by Kostin, by Bialynicki-Birula and Mycielski, and by Doebner and Goldin, with time-dependent coefficients, can be obtained from the linear Schrödinger equation through gauge transformation and a subsequent process we call gauge generalization. We thus unify, on fundamental grounds, a rather diverse set of nonlinear time evolutions in quantum mechanics.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||15|
|Journal||Journal of Mathematical Physics|
|State||Published - Jan 1999|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Mathematical Physics