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Nuclear interface energy at finite temperatures

Nuclear Physics A
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0375-9474(83)90667-x
  • Chemistry
  • Physics


Abstract The thermodynamic properties at finite temperatures of the plane interface between two phases of nuclear matter in equilibrium are examined theoretically, and explored numerically. The microscopic hamiltonian, the Skyrme I′ interaction, is used in the Thomas-Fermi approximation to obtain the finite-temperature extensions of earlier zero-temperature results which used the Hartree-Fock and Thomas-Fermi methods. Approximate analytic fits are given to the χ i (proton fraction on the dense-matter side) dependence of the critical temperature, and to the T and χ i dependences of the surface thermodynamic potentials, the density of surface neutrons, the surface entropy and the neutron and proton chemical potentials at phase equilibrium. These fits are an ingredient in a compressible liquid-drop nuclear model, the basis of an equation of state for hot, dense matter needed in certain astrophysical applications. The liquid-drop model is used here to construct an isolated, low- T nucleus, whose properties are compared with the original zero- T Hartree-Fock calculations which lead to the Skyrme I interaction, and with other mass formulae. The low-temperature expansion of the surface energy is compared with that obtained in other calculations. The nuclear level density at the Fermi surface, related to the low- T expansion of the entropy of the whole nucleus, is also discussed.

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