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From laser produced Debye layers in plasma to a theory of nuclear forces and quark-gluon plasmas

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 March 2006

Department of Theoretical Physics, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia


A new theory for the nuclear forces for confining the nucleons in a nucleus was derived from a generalization of the Debye layer as known from the plasma ablation at laser irradiation where the temperature is substituted by the Fermi energy of the statistics of nucleons. The first convincing proof is by using the empirical density of the nucleons defining their Fermi energy to arrive at a Debye length of about 3 fm as measured by Hofstadter for the decay of the nucleon density at the surface of heavy nuclei. Taking then the surface tension of plasmas with the same steps of substituting temperature by Fermi energy, the surface energy of nuclei is always too small against the nucleon enthalpy to confine the nucleons until equilibrium is reduced at about such high densities reproducing the well known radii of nuclei. The Hofstadter decay can be interpreted as the inhomogeneous wave of the nucleons by Wigner scattering at the nuclear surface similar to the Goos-Haenchen effect. By this way, nuclei are possible only until uranium or curium by a Boltzmann equilibrium process explaining the endothermic generation of heavy nuclei. At about six times higher nucleon density, the Fermi statistics changes into its relativistic branch resulting in a surface energy always smaller than before, and the mass and density independence indicates that one cannot distinguish between the state as in a neutron star or as a quark-gluon plasma. The steps from the ablation of laser produced plasma via a quantum theory of the surface tension in metals to the new nuclear force theory are explained. A consideration of the magic numbers indicates a quark-shell structure of nuclei.

Research Article
© 2006 Cambridge University Press

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