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How fast is the quantum fluctuations?

I know particles can appear and disappear in “empty” space. I think they call it virtual particles I think.
Do they know how fast it’s fluctuating? Is it speed of light?
I guess it will be more like how frequent, like in Hertz.

4 COMMENTS

  1. As per the laws of Conservation nothing gets annihilated or disappear. Particles in order to exist have to be real having a volume and a density.
    Space according to Relativity theory is filled with a space time fabric which at one time Democritus believed was a filled with a fluid of an indivisible granular substance now called Aether .
    Thus aether was considered a Quantum by Democritus.
    A Quantum by definition is a set quantity and therefore cannot fluctuate.Thus no real particle can be in two places at the same time.
    Only gravity can fluctuate. And a gravity wave as per relativity theory moves at the speed of light.
    Physics basically analyzes what is considered real and understood. Anything else would be Chimerical.

  2. Quanta distribute over space and velocity; or time and energy… they are equivalent distributions. This is why the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle can be specified in either set of terms. This means if we locate a quantum, its velocity will be indeterminate; or if we measure its duration in time specifically, the energy cannot be determined.
    Quanta are not fluctuating so much as they have a distribution of space and velocity, or time and energy. Meaning quanta have a probability of these factors and that probability distribution does not come and go when the seem to come a go. That probability is always there.
    What happens is that by locating where a quantum exists in space, we have made it impossible to determine its velocity. So we really don’t know what its velocity might be, if indeed there is a velocity. On the other hand, if we were to detect its velocity, we would have no idea where it was located.
    A prime example of the duality uncertainty is the split slit experiment. We know photons, which are quanta, travel at light speed. But that means we have no way of knowing where one of those little guys might be. In fact, through experiment, it can be shown that a single photon has a probability of going through both slits concurrently. In the quantum world, things can be in more than one place at any given moment. As Feynman has often said, no one really understand quantum physics.

  3. It’s a random event, so it has no period. The time between pair production and annihilation is scarcely long enough to be measured.

  4. As Frank said, it is random, so it does not have a ‘frequency’ or ‘period’. However, there is a duration for each event, which is given by the uncertainty principle given at the top of Frank’s first website:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_fluctuation
    That is to say the duration a particle can exist (Delta t) is:
    Delta t <= h/(2 pi Delta E) Here h is Planck's constant (6.626*10^-34 m^2 kg/s) and Delta E is the energy of the particle (including relativistic energy). The larger the particle, the more energy it has and the less time it can exist as a fluctuation. As some examples: An electron could exist 10^-21 seconds A proton could exist 10^-25 seconds A gold atom could exist 10^-27 seconds A person could exist 10^-53 seconds In all cases, these times are extremely small. To give you some perspective, a chemical reaction on the atomic scale occurs in 10^-15 seconds. A computer processor performs a single calculation in 10^-9. The human eye blinks in 10^-1 seconds. The difference between the time scales of a blink of an eye and an electron fluctuation is 20 orders of magnitude. That the same relative difference in scale as the size of molecule versus the distance between earth and the sun.

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