Quantum Monte Carlo methods have proved valuable to study the structure and reactions of light nuclei and nucleonic matter starting from realistic nuclear interactions and currents. These ab initio calculations reproduce many low-lying states, moments, and transitions in light nuclei, and simultaneously predict many properties of light nuclei and neutron matter over a rather wide range of energy and momenta. The nuclear interactions and currents are reviewed along with a description of the continuum quantum Monte Carlo methods used in nuclear physics. These methods are similar to those used in condensed matter and electronic structure but naturally include spin-isospin, tensor, spin-orbit, and three-body interactions. A variety of results are presented, including the low-lying spectra of light nuclei, nuclear form factors, and transition matrix elements. Low-energy scattering techniques, studies of the electroweak response of nuclei relevant in electron and neutrino scattering, and the properties of dense nucleonic matter as found in neutron stars are also described. A coherent picture of nuclear structure and dynamics emerges based upon rather simple but realistic interactions and currents.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy