Quantum measurement is one of the most fascinating and discussed phenomena in quantum physics, due to the impact on the system of the measurement action and the resulting interpretation issues. Scholars proposed weak measurements to amplify measured signals by exploiting a quantity called a weak value, but also to overcome philosophical difficulties related to the system perturbation induced by the measurement process. The method finds many applications and raises many philosophical questions as well, especially about the proper interpretation of the observations. In this paper, we show that any weak value can be expressed as the expectation value of a suitable non-normal operator. We propose a preliminary explanation of their anomalous and amplification behavior based on the theory of non-normal matrices and their link with non-normality: the weak value is different from an eigenvalue when the operator involved in the expectation value is non-normal. Our study paves the way for a deeper understanding of the measurement phenomenon, helps the design of experiments, and it is a call for collaboration to researchers in both fields to unravel new quantum phenomena induced by non-normality.
Original languageEnglish
Article number475303
Number of pages30
JournalJournal of Physics A: Mathematical and Theoretical
Issue number47
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2023


  • weak value
  • non-normality
  • Henrici departure from normality
  • weak measurement
  • weak value modulus


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