WHAT IS THE ATOMIC NUCLEUS DOING THESE DAYS?
February 22, 2016 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Georgia Tech,School of Physics
The nucleus is a level of organization of matter, giving a wide range of examples of finite quantum many-body effects from independent particle to Cooper pairs to collective rotations. I will have a few things to say about these issues that every physicist should be aware of, and a moral tale to tell.
But, it is in the domain of nuclear physics that one finds some of the reasons that WE are all here—the Hoyle state in 12C, that we are the ashes of supernovae explosions. And the nucleus is a laboratory for fundamental processes—the testing of the number of flavors in the Universe (as in quark flavors) via beta decay rates, the potential to establish the absolute mass scale of neutrinos via double beta decay. A few details of these issues will be sketched on the road to more quantum mechanical issues.