“At first, I was deeply alarmed. I had the feeling that, through the surface of atomic phenomena, I was looking at a strangely beautiful interior, and felt almost giddy at the thought that I now had to probe this wealth of mathematical structures nature had so generously spread out before me.” -Heisenberg, on realizing the potential of applying his “new algebra” (a form of matrix algebra) to the equations of atomic physics
“In three months of intensive work Born, Heisenberg and their colleague Pascual Jordan developed what Heisenberg calls ‘a coherent mathematical framework, one that promised to embrace all the multifarious aspects of atomic physics.’ Quantum mechanics, the new system was called. It fit the experimental evidence to a high degree of accuracy." -Rhodes, The Making of the Atomic Bomb
FIRST EDITIONS of three papers that defined a discipline: THE THEORETICAL FOUNDATION FOR QUANTUM MECHANICS.
“In May 1925, Heisenberg deliberately abandoned the classical picture of particles and orbits, and took a long, hard look at the mathematics that describes the associations between pairs of quantum states, without asking himself how the quantum entity gets from state A to state B... In the summer of 1925, working with Pasqual Jordan, Born translated Heisenberg’s mathematical insight into the formal language of matrices, and Born, Heisenberg and Jordan together published a full account of the work, in what became known as the ‘three-man paper’. The equations of Newtonian (classical) mechanics were replaced by similar equations involving matrices, and many of the fundamental concepts of classical mechanics- such as the conservation of energy- emerged naturally from the new equations. Matrix mechanics seemed to contain Newtonian Mechanics within itself, in much the same way that the equations of the general theory of relativity include the Newtonian description of gravity as a special case” (Gribben, Q is for Quantum).
Heisenberg, Werner. Uber quantentheorestische Umdeutung kinematischer und mechanischer Beziehungen. Particle Physics: One Hundred Years of Discoveries: "Foundation of quantum mechanics, Heisenberg approach. Nobel Prize to W. Heisenberg awarded in 1932 'for the creation of quantum mechanics'".
Heisenberg; Born, Max and Jordan, Pasqual. Zur Quantenmechanik.Particle Physics: One Hundred Years of Discoveries: "Invention of matrix formalism for the Heisenberg quantum mechanics. Systems with one degree of freedom."
Heisenberg, Born, Jordan. Zur Quantenmechanik II. Particle Physics: One Hundred Years of Discoveries: "Development of matrix formalism for the Heisenberg quantum mechanics. Systems with arbitrary many degrees of freedom."
IN: Zeitschrift fur Physik, Vols. 33 (pp. 879-893), 34 (858-888), 35 (557-615). Berlin: Julius Springer, 1925-1926. Octavo, volume 33 with half black cloth over marbled boards; volume 34 and 35 in half red cloth over red boards. Volume 33 is taller (wider margins) than the other two volumes. A few institutional stamps to preliminaries. All three volumes with stamps from the prestigious Gmelin Institute (after 1996, part of the Max Planck Institute). Overall, very good condition.
Price: $7,500 .