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An Introduction to Nuclear Physics This clear and concise introduction to nuclear physics provides an excellent basis for a `core' undergraduate course in this area. The book opens by setting nuclear physics in the context of elementary particle physics and then shows how simple models can provide an understanding of the properties of nuclei, both in theirground states and excited states, and also of the nature of nuclear reactions. The book includes chapters on nuclear ®ssion, its application in nuclear power reactors, and the role of nuclear physics in energy production and nucleosynthesis in stars. This new edition contains several additional topics: muon-catalysed fusion, the nuclear and neutrino physics of supernovae, neutrino mass andneutrino oscillations, and the biological effects of radiation. A knowledge of basic quantum mechanics and special relativity is assumed. Appendices deal with other more specialised topics. Each chapter ends with a set of problems for which outline solutions are provided. NOEL COTTINGHAM and DEREK GREENWOOD are theoreticians working in the H. H. Wills Physics Laboratory at the University of Bristol. Noel Cottingham is also a visiting professor at the Universite Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris. They have also collaborated in an undergraduate text, Electricity and Magnetism, and a graduate text, An Introduction to the Standard Model of Particle Physics. Both books are published by the Cambridge University Press.

An Introduction to

Nuclear Physics
Second edition

W. N. COTTINGHAMUniversity of Bristol D. A. GREENWOOD University of Bristol

          The Pitt Building, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, United Kingdom    The Edinburgh Building, Cambridge CB2 2RU, UK 40 West 20th Street, New York, NY 10011-4211, USA 477 Williamstown Road, Port Melbourne, VIC 3207, Australia Ruiz de Alarcón 13, 28014 Madrid,Spain Dock House, The Waterfront, Cape Town 8001, South Africa © Cambridge University Press 1986, 2004 First published in printed format 2001 ISBN 0-511-04046-6 eBook (netLibrary) ISBN 0-521-65149-2 hardback ISBN 0-521-65733-4 paperback First published 1986 Reprinted 1987 (with corrections and additions), 1988, 1990, 1992, 1998 Second edition 2001


1 1.1 1.21.3 1.4 2 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 3 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7

Preface to the second edition Preface to the ®rst edition Constants of nature, conversion factors and notation Glossary of some important symbols Prologue Fermions and bosons The particle physicist's picture of nature Conservation laws and symmetries: parity Units Problems Leptons and the electromagnetic and weak interactions Theelectromagnetic interaction The weak interaction Mean life and half life Leptons The instability of the heavy leptons: muon decay Parity violation in muon decay Problems Nucleons and the strong interaction Properties of the proton and the neutron The quark model of nucleons The nucleon±nucleon interaction: the phenomenological description Mesons and the nucleon±nucleon interaction The weakinteraction: -decay More quarks The Standard Model of particle physics Problems

ix x xii xiii 1 2 2 3 4 5 7 7 9 12 13 15 16 17 19 19 21 22 26 28 29 31 31



4 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 5 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 6 6.1 6.2 6.3 7 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 8 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 9 9.1

Nuclear sizes and nuclear masses Electron scattering by the nuclear charge distribution Muoninteractions The distribution of nuclear matter in nuclei The masses and binding energies of nuclei in their ground states The semi-empirical mass formula The -stability valley The masses of the -stable nuclei The energetics of -decay and ®ssion Nuclear binding and the nucleon±nucleon potential Problems Ground-state properties of nuclei: the shell model Nuclear potential wells Estimates of...
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