Physics Colloquium: Prof. Elena Litvinova, Western Michigan University


Location: 118 Nieuwland Science Hall (View on map )


Emergent Phenomena in Atomic Nuclei and Astrophysics

Prof. Elena Litvinova
Department of Physics, Western Michigan University
National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Michigan State University

Emergence has become a unifying theme for the 21st century science. In particular, in natural sciences, macroscopic and mesoscopic regularities in the behavior of strongly-interacting quantum many-body systems, arising as a result of myriad interactions between the constituent local degrees of freedom, are collectively referred to as emergent phenomena. Remarkably, such phenomena are associated with resolving conceptual difficulties and controversies in various contexts across disciplines, from particle physics to quantum chemistry. 

In this talk, I will address the role of emergence in the physics of atomic nuclei and the impact of emergent effects on the nuclear reactions, which play a crucial role in astrophysics. It will be discussed how collective degrees of freedom emerge from the underlying nucleon-nucleon interaction and modify the nucleonic motion in a strongly-correlated medium. The impact of the coupling between collective and single-nucleon degrees of freedom on nuclear excited states will be analyzed. Further influence of the respective correlations on the nuclear reactions in kilonovae and supernovae, such as the neutron capture, beta decay and electron capture, will be evaluated.

Future prospects of the novel theoretical and computational developments on nuclear emergent phenomena for the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) physics and astrophysics will be outlined.

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