Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Physics Division

Physics Division Seminars

Physics Division Seminars bring us speakers on a variety of physics related subjects. Usually these are held in the Building 6008 large Conference Room, at 3:00 pm on the chosen day, but times and locations may vary. For more information, contact our seminar chairman,

Alfredo Galindo-Uribarri
Tel (Office): (865) 574-6124  (FAX): (865) 574-1268

Thu., October 06, 2005, at 3:00 p.m. (refreshments at 2:40 p.m.)

Simplicity and complexity in the study of nuclei

David Dean, Physics Division
Bldg. 6025 Large Conference Room

Investigations of rare isotopes in the laboratory will open the way to understand and clarify the properties of all nuclei and bulk nuclear matter. In this talk I will assess where we stand today in solving the nuclear problem and how future rare isotope facilities will impact our understanding of nuclei. The first part of the nuclear problem concerns our ability to describe complex nuclei from the ground up using as input the basic interactions among protons and neutrons. We are on the verge of discovering how light nuclear systems are built from bare nuclear interactions that have their roots in QCD. I will describe this exciting frontier of research through illustrating recent progress in the nuclear implementation of coupled-cluster methods, a quantum many-body technique enjoying great success in quantum chemistry. A second and equally amazing aspect of the nuclear problem involves the occurrence of emergent phenomena such as the development of shell structure, collective excitations, pairing super-fluidity, and deformation, many of which are also found in other quantum many-body systems. I will describe the interplay between nuclear pairing and deformation as a function of increasing excitation energy in mass 60-80 nuclei (from neutron-rich to neutron deficient) where a wealth of rich and varied emergent phenomena exits. Studies of nuclei in the framework of quantum many-body theory require significant computational capability; I will also briefly touch on this theme and its importance to the future of nuclear theory research.