## Abstract

In order to rigorously derive the amplitude factor of the semiclassical approximation to the quantum propagator, we extend an existing method originally devised to evaluate Gaussian path-integral expressions. Using a result which relates the determinant of symmetric block-tridiagonal matrices to the determinants of their blocks, two difference equations are obtained. The first one allows to establish the connection of the amplitude factor to Jacobi's accessory equations in the continuous-time limit, while the second one leads to an additional factor which, however, contributes to the final result only in exceptional cases. In order to demonstrate the wide applicability of these difference equations, we treat explicitly the case where the time-sliced Lagrangian is written in generalized coordinates, for which a general derivation has so far been unavailable.

Original language | English |
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Article number | 072105 |

Journal | Journal of Mathematical Physics |

Volume | 56 |

Issue number | 7 |

DOIs | |

State | Published - 1 Jul 2015 |

Externally published | Yes |

## ASJC Scopus subject areas

- Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
- Mathematical Physics