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    • CommentRowNumber1.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2013
    • (edited Mar 22nd 2013)

    felt like making a terminological note on phase and phase space in physics (and linked to it from the relevant entries).

    If anyone has more information on the historical origin of the term “phase space”, please let me know.

    • CommentRowNumber2.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2013
    • (edited Mar 22nd 2013)

    Ah, I have found it: on p. 4 of

    • David Nolte, The tangled tale of phase space, PhysicsToday (April 2010) (pdf)

    the term “phase” in “phase space” is traced back (p. 4) to Boltzmann and then Maxwell. The coordinates and momenta being the Bewegungsphase, “phase of motion”.

    Have worked that into phase and phase space in physics now.

    • CommentRowNumber3.
    • CommentAuthorTobyBartels
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2013


    • CommentRowNumber4.
    • CommentAuthorUrs
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2013

    Yes, so that article by Nolte above is an interesting read. That’s how history really proceeds, in homoclinic tangles…

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