Public Release: 16-Oct-2014
Science Protons hog the momentum in neutron-rich nuclei
Protons and neutrons that have briefly paired up in the nucleus have higher-average momentum, leaving less for non-paired nucleons. Researchers have now shown for the first time that this phenomenon exists in nuclei heavier than carbon, including aluminum, iron and lead and also surprisingly allows a greater fraction of protons than neutrons to have high momentum in these neutron-rich nuclei, contrary to long-accepted theories and with implications for ultra-cold atomic gas systems and neutron stars.
DOE/Office of Science, National Science Foundation, Israel Science Foundation, Comision Nacional de Investigacion Cientifica y Technologica, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
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