Heisenberg-Einstein Context Principle and the Dynamic Core-Context of Discovery in Physics

  1. Dr. Dietrich Papenfuß2,
  2. Professor Dr. Dieter Lüst3 and
  3. Professor Dr. Wolfgang P. Schleich4
  1. Giridhari Lal Pandit

Published Online: 29 NOV 2007

DOI: 10.1002/9783527610853.ch6

100 Years Werner Heisenberg: Works and Impact

100 Years Werner Heisenberg: Works and Impact

How to Cite

Pandit, G. L. (2007) Heisenberg-Einstein Context Principle and the Dynamic Core-Context of Discovery in Physics, in 100 Years Werner Heisenberg: Works and Impact (eds D. Papenfuß, D. Lüst and W. P. Schleich), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527610853.ch6

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Alexander von Humboldt-Stiftung, Bonn, Germany

  2. 3

    Humboldt Universität, Institut für Physik, Germany

  3. 4

    Universität Ulm, Abteilung f. Quantenphysik, Albert-Einstein-Allee 11, 89069 Ulm, Germany

Author Information

  1. Delhi University, Delhi, India

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 29 NOV 2007
  2. Published Print: 27 AUG 2002

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9783527403929

Online ISBN: 9783527610853

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Keywords:

  • Heisenberg-Einstein context principle;
  • dynamic core-context;
  • discovery in physics;
  • interpretation of quantum mechanics;
  • guiding principles in theory-finding;
  • guiding principles in theory-testing within physics;
  • making physics open-ended;
  • particular aspect of physical theory;
  • some general principle;
  • methodological interest;
  • significant agreement;
  • resolving some of their methodological differences;
  • removing some of their shared philosophical misunderstandings;
  • deep concern with the fundamental aspects of physical theory;
  • deep concern with its mathematical formalism

Summary

My main aim here is to present a general methodological principle, which I propose to designate as Heisenberg-Einstein context principle, as it emerges from their dialogue on physical theory, becoming their most important meeting point in the interpretation of quantum mechanics. I regard as context principles those, which can serve as guiding principles in theory-finding and theory-testing within physics. I think that they must be judged by their impact in making physics open-ended. As regards Heisenberg-Einstein dialogue, three important questions can be raised. The first question is which particular aspect of physical theory were they both concerned with. The second question is whether there emerged from their dialogue some general principle, as a guiding principle of sufficient methodological interest, on which they both showed significant agreement, resolving some of their methodological differences by removing some of their shared philosophical misunderstandings concerning physical theory. This gives rise to the third question whether their dialogue resulted in a significant impact on their respective positions on the interpretation, or foundations, of quantum mechanics. While answering the last two questions in the affirmative, I shall argue for the thesis that in their dialogue they shared a rather deep concern with the fundamental aspects of physical theory – with its mathematical formalism. Taken in this aspect, a physical theory, as and when it becomes mature after it has passed tests, contributes to context-building in theory-finding and theory-testing, generating new frontiers of discovery in physics and astronomy. In a nutshell, I am here concerned with the problem of reconnecting observation with theory, and discovery, or rather frontier of discovery, in physics with the core-context of discovery, trying to bring out the significance of the Heisenberg-Einstein context principle.