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The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including those from the School of Psychological Sciences & Health - but also papers by researchers based within the Faculties of Science, Engineering, Humanities & Social Sciences, and from the Strathclyde Business School.

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Nonadiabatic transitions in multilevel systems

Wilkinson, Michael and Morgan, Michael A. (2000) Nonadiabatic transitions in multilevel systems. Physical Review A, 61 (6). 062104-1. ISSN 1094-1622

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Abstract

In a quantum system with a smoothly and slowly varying Hamiltonian, which approaches a constant operator at times t→±∞, the transition probabilities between adiabatic states are exponentially small. They are characterized by an exponent that depends on a phase integral along a path around a set of branch points connecting the energy-level surfaces in complex time. Only certain sequences of branch points contribute. We propose that these sequences are determined by a topological rule involving the Stokes lines attached to the branch points. Our hypothesis is supported by theoretical arguments and results of numerical experiments.