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Heads or tails in zero gravity: an example of a classical contextual "measurement"

Abstract : Playing the game of heads or tails in zero gravity demonstrates that there exists a contextual "measurement" in classical mechanics. When the coin is flipped, its orientation is a continuous variable. However, the "measurement" that occurs when the coin is caught by clapping two hands together gives a discrete value (heads or tails) that depends on the context (orientation of the hands). It is then shown that there is a strong analogy with the spin measurement of the Stern-Gerlach experiment, and in particular with Stern and Gerlach’s sequential measurements. Finally, we clarify the analogy by recalling how the de Broglie-Bohm interpretation simply explains the spin "measurement".
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Contributor : Alexandre Gondran Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Tuesday, March 21, 2017 - 4:45:18 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 8:17:42 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, June 22, 2017 - 12:18:43 PM


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Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


  • HAL Id : hal-01490632, version 1
  • ARXIV : 1703.07550



Alexandre Gondran, Michel Gondran. Heads or tails in zero gravity: an example of a classical contextual "measurement". 2017. ⟨hal-01490632⟩



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