2020 Advanced Nuclear Physics

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Physics
Nakamura Takashi  Fujioka Hiroyuki 
Class Format
Lecture    (ZOOM)
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Tue3-4(H119A)  Fri3-4(H119A)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
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Course description and aims

Provide lectures on basics and applications of modern nuclear physics. Discuss important topics concerning a variety of phenomena. Discuss recent relevant articles, some of which are assigned as homework.
Atomic nuclei can be uniquely modeled as strongly correlated, self-bound, many-body quantum systems. By studying the physics of atomic nuclei, students will learn both theory and application of quantum mechanics and quantum field theory. This class will also cover cutting-edge experiments on nuclei using modern accelerators, and recent experimental equipment and methods that are important to further understand nuclear physics.

Student learning outcomes

Students will understand basic nuclear physics that treats atomic nuclei as self-bound many-body quantum systems through recent progress in the cutting-edge fields (physics of unstable nuclei and hyper-nuclei). They will also be able to obtain a better perspective on their own research by learning about such advanced nuclear physics and the relevant applications to condensed-matter physics and astrophysics.
In this course, students will learn about the quantum dynamics of nuclei, nuclear structure and reactions, and the basic theory of strong interactions through various models and relevant experiments. They will also learn about recent theoretical and experimental work in this field.


Atomic nuclei, strong interaction, self-bound systems, quantum many-body systems, nuclear structure, nuclear reaction, experiments using accelerators, rare isotopes, nucleo-synthesis, hypernuclei, strangeness

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Two professors of nuclear physics will give lectures: Prof. Takashi Nakamura treats nuclear physics with protons and neutrons, in particular, physics of unstable nuclei, and its applications to nuclear astrophysics. Prof. Hiroyuki Fujioka treats nuclear physics with hyperons (hypernuclei) with strangeness. Lectures are given in English. Slides are primarily used in the class with some handouts. Blackboards are used as well for explaining the points.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Landscape of nuclei Why do nuclei favor Z=N? How neutron-rich a nucleus can be?
Class 2 Production of radioisotope beam (Nuclear reactions) How are unstable nuclei produced? Understand the characteristic features of nuclear reactions
Class 3 Nuclear Halo (Physics of weakly-bound nuclei) How large a nucleus can be?
Class 4 Coulomb breakup of neutron-halo nuclei (Cutting-edge nuclear physics 1) How can we probe experimentally the microscopic structure of halo?
Class 5 Shell Evolution in nuclei Understand the shell model picture of atomic nuclei Are the magic numbers in nuclei universal?
Class 6 Neuron star and neutron-skin nuclei (Cutting-edge nuclear physics 2) How does nuclear matter (infinite nucleonic system) behave? How can we probe experimentally neutron stars with laboratory experiments?
Class 7 Nucleo-synthesis and nuclear astrophysics How are the chemical elements synthesized in the universe?
Class 8 Basics of hypernuclear physics Understand the basics of hypernuclear physics)
Class 9 Production of Λ hypernuclei I Understand the production method of Λ hypernuclei by using meson beams
Class 10 Production of Λ hypernuclei II Understand the production method of Λ hypernuclei by using electron beams
Class 11 Structure of Λ hypernuclei Understand the structure of Λ hypernuclei and hyperon-nucleon interaction
Class 12 Decay of Λ hypernuclei Understand the decay mechanism of Λ hypernuclei
Class 13 Σ hypernuclei and Ξ hypernuclei Learn about Σ hypernuclei and Ξ hypernuclei
Class 14 Double Λ hyperncuei Learn about double Λ hypernuclei

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


Fuantei-kaku-no-butsuri (Physics of Unstable Nuclei) by Takashi Nakamura (Publisher: Kyoritsu Shuppan): As English version of this book is not available, relevant review papers are shown during the class.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Handouts are given in the class, or via OCW.

Assessment criteria and methods

To be evaluated based on an examination, and report(s) dealing with problems indicated in the class

Related courses

  • PHY.F430 : Hadron Physics
  • PHY.F436 : Advanced Particle Physics
  • PHY.F350 : Nuclear Physics
  • PHY.F351 : Elementary Particles
  • PHY.Q438 : Quantum Mechanics of Many-Body Systems
  • PHY.Q208 : Quantum Mechanics II
  • PHY.Q311 : Quantum Mechanics III
  • PHY.Q331 : Relativistic Quantum Mechanics

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Basic under-graduate quantum physics course is a prerequisite.


Please check the class schedule. The detailed schedule by Nakamura and Fujioka will be given in the first class

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