Concept

Identical particles

Summary
In quantum mechanics, identical particles (also called indistinguishable or indiscernible particles) are particles that cannot be distinguished from one another, even in principle. Species of identical particles include, but are not limited to, elementary particles (such as electrons), composite subatomic particles (such as atomic nuclei), as well as atoms and molecules. Quasiparticles also behave in this way. Although all known indistinguishable particles only exist at the quantum scale, there is no exhaustive list of all possible sorts of particles nor a clear-cut limit of applicability, as explored in quantum statistics. There are two main categories of identical particles: bosons, which can share quantum states, and fermions, which cannot (as described by the Pauli exclusion principle). Examples of bosons are photons, gluons, phonons, helium-4 nuclei and all mesons. Examples of fermions are electrons, neutrinos, quarks, protons, neutrons, and helium-3 nuclei. The fact that part
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