• Stephen J. Gustafson
  • Israel Michael Sigal
Part of the Universitext book series (UTX)


The notion of a resonance is a key notion in quantum physics. It refers to metastable states — i.e., to states which behave like stationary states for long time intervals, but which eventually break up. In other words, these are states of the continuous spectrum (i.e. scattering states), which for a long time behave as if they were bound states. In fact, the notion of a bound state is an idealization: most of the states which are (taken to be) bound states in certain models, turn out to be resonance states in a more realistic description of the system.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen J. Gustafson
    • 1
  • Israel Michael Sigal
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MathematicsUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Department of MathematicsUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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