Quantum manifestations of classical stochasticity. I. Energetics of some nonlinear systems

Yitzhak Weissman*, Joshua Jortner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


In this paper we present the results of a semiclassical investigation and a quantum mechanical study of the bound energy spectrum of the Henon-Heiles Hamiltonian (HHH) and of the Barbanis Hamiltonian (BH). We have derived a simple semiclassical formula for the energy levels E, and for their sensitivity dE/dε with respect to the strength ε of the nonlinear coupling for the HHH, and established general relations between E and its derivatives d n E/dεn (n ≥ 1). Numerical quantum mechanical computations of the energy levels were conducted for the HHH and for the BH. The nonlinear coupling constant was adjusted so that for the HHH there will be ∼150 states up to the classical critical energy Ec and ∼300 states up to the dissociation energy ED. The E values were obtained by direct diagonalization using a basis containing 760 states, while the values of dE/dε were computed utilizing the Hellmann-Feynman theorem. Good agreement between the semiclassical and the quantum mechanical spectra was observed well above Ec. The present calculations demonstrate the persistence of a regular level structure of the HHH and the BH well above E c. These results raise the distinct possibility that the semiclassical approximation for these nonlinear systems does not break down in the vicinity of Ec and that the bound level structure does not provide a manifestation of the classical transition from quasiperiodic to chaotic motion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1469-1485
Number of pages17
JournalThe Journal of Chemical Physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1982


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