Noether's theorem
Statement relating differentiable symmetries to conserved quantities / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Noether's theorem or Noether's first theorem states that every differentiable symmetry of the action of a physical system with conservative forces has a corresponding conservation law.[1] The theorem was proven by mathematician Emmy Noether in 1915 and published in 1918.[2] The action of a physical system is the integral over time of a Lagrangian function, from which the system's behavior can be determined by the principle of least action. This theorem only applies to continuous and smooth symmetries over physical space.
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Noether's theorem is used in theoretical physics and the calculus of variations. It reveals the fundamental relation between the symmetries of a physical system and the conservation laws. It also made modern theoretical physicists much more focused on symmetries of physical systems. A generalization of the formulations on constants of motion in Lagrangian and Hamiltonian mechanics (developed in 1788 and 1833, respectively), it does not apply to systems that cannot be modeled with a Lagrangian alone (e.g., systems with a Rayleigh dissipation function). In particular, dissipative systems with continuous symmetries need not have a corresponding conservation law ^{[citation needed]}.