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Wick rotation

A Wick rotation is a method of finding a solution of a mathematical problem in Minkowski space by solving a related problem in Euclidean space through a transformation in which a pure imaginary variable is replaced by a real variable.

 


Explanation

The idea of rotation stems from the observation that Minkowski metrics in natural units

and Euclidean metrics in four dimensions

coincide if you put t = −iτ. This solution may then, under reverse substitution, yield a solution to the original problem.

 


Additional information

The rotation is named after the Italien physicist Gian Carlo Wick.

 


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