PhilSci Archive

Do symmetries "explain" conservation principles? The modern converse Noether theorem vs pragmatism

Brown, Harvey R. (2020) Do symmetries "explain" conservation principles? The modern converse Noether theorem vs pragmatism. [Preprint]

[img]
Preview
Text
Noether_20_.pdf

Download (397kB) | Preview

Abstract

Noether’s first theorem does not establish a one-way explanatory arrow from symmetries to conservation laws, but such an arrow is widely assumed in discussions of the theorem in the physics and philosophy literature. It is argued here that there are pragmatic reasons for privileging symmetries, even if they do not strictly justify explanatory priority. To this end, some practical factors are adduced as to why Noether’s direct theorem seems to be more well-known and exploited than its converse, with special attention being given to the sometimes overlooked nature of Noether’s converse result and to its strengthened version due to Luis Martinez Alonso in 1979 and Peter Olver in 1986.


Export/Citation: EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
Social Networking:
Share |

Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Brown, Harvey R.
Additional Information: Submitted to the volume The Philosophy and Physics of Noether's Theorems, James Read, Bryan Roberts, Nicholas Teh (Eds.), Cambridge University Press
Keywords: Noether, symmetry, conservation law
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Symmetries/Invariances
Depositing User: Prof Harvey R Brown
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2020 02:52
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2020 02:52
Item ID: 18285
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Symmetries/Invariances
Date: 16 October 2020
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/18285

Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Monthly Downloads for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item