About Theoretical Nuclear Physics
The group works on topics that range from low-energy nuclear structure to the frontier where nuclear and particle physics overlap. Our current interests are focussed on "fundamental" approaches to nuclear physics, with the ultimate goal of linking it to quantum chromodynamics (QCD) - the underlying theory of the strong interaction. We have particular expertise in the areas of effective field theory and in microscopic many-body theory.
There are two main strands to our work. One is relating the structure and interactions of nucleons and mesons to QCD. Here we are interested in the key role played by the symmetries of QCD, especially the chiral symmetry which encodes the fact that up and down quarks have very small masses. This work makes use of tools from quantum field theory, in particular effective field theories and the renormalisation group.The second strand is the calculation of the structure and properties of nuclei starting from forces between nucleons in vacuum. This uses techniques from few-body physics and microscopic many-body theory, such as the coupled-cluster method.
Current projects and interests
Our current research includes:
- applications of chiral perturbation theory to study how a nucleon responds to external field
- determinations of the two- and three-body forces between nucleons from effective field theories
- development of a the coupled-cluster method for realistic nuclear forces
- studies of dense fermionic matter, either nuclear matter or ultracold atomic condensates, using the functional renormalisation group.
Members of the group are also interested in:
- large-amplitude collective motion
- nuclear reactions
- relativistic quark models of hadrons
- rare Standard-Model processes involving nucleons
- the phase transition from nuclear to quark matter
- solitons in quantum field theories and condensed-matter systems
- Monte-Carlo methods applied to phase transitions.