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Collective behaviour in exotic nuclei

Only at the limits of stability can the finer details of the atomic nuclei structure be isolated and studied. One such extreme is that of heavy even-even nuclei, which were at the centre of an EU-funded research project.
Collective behaviour in exotic nuclei
MATNEC (Microscopic and algebraic theory of nuclei under extreme conditions) focused on the collective behaviour of exotic nuclei. Numerous models had been developed, ranging from simple idealised descriptions to highly complex multi-parameter models. The use of different models for different forms of behaviour was, however, somewhat unsatisfying.

Scientists proposed a new, promising approach to describing the collective behaviour of these quantum many-body systems that combines algebraic and microscopic theories. Among them, energy density functionals provide an accurate description of the low-energy structure of heavy nuclei. On the other hand, interacting boson models allow calculation of the low-energy nuclei structure.

Combination of a microscopic with an algebraic description of nuclei spectral properties was used to study symmetries and phases in nuclei far from stability. The findings on heavy even-even nuclei provided valuable theoretical support to experimental results from rare-isotope beam facilities around the world and, in particular, at the Grand Accélérateur National d'Ions Lourds (GANIL) in France.

Importantly, the MATNEC approach is general enough to be applicable to the study of elementary excitation modes in molecules and even low-energy excitations of Bose-Einstein condensates. Collective behaviour in nuclei, manifested as highly regular energy levels, can have a central role in improving our understanding of strongly interacting quantum many-body systems.

Related information

Keywords

Collective behaviour, exotic nuclei, nuclei structure, MATNEC, quantum many-body systems
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