Implementation of covariant QRPA to describe deformed atomic nuclei

All other things being equal, what differences can be expected from the choice of a relativistic or non-relativistic interaction in the QRPA description of the excited states of the atomic nucleus? In order to answer it, the student will on one hand use numerical tools to solve non- relativistic interaction QRPA matrix equations and on the other hand use a solver of the finite amplitude method to produce QRPA response functions with relativistic interactions. These numerical tools leverage supercomputers and are widely used for nuclear data and astrophysics issues as well as to conduct academic nuclear structure studies. The relativistic extension of the matrix QRPA solver will make it possible to transfer all the expertise of nuclear data production to the case of interactions from relativistic lagrangians. Thus, an analysis of the respective merits of the two functionals will be conducted and exploited with a view to the development of new generation effective interactions.

Relativistic laboratory astrophysics

This PhD project is concerned with the numerical and theoretical modeling of the ultra-relativistic plasmas encountered in a variety of astrophysical environments such as gamma-ray bursts or pulsar wind nebulae, as well as in future laboratory experiments on extreme laser-plasma, beam-plasma or gamma-plasma interactions. The latter experiments are envisioned at the multi-petawatt laser facilities currently under development worldwide (e.g. the European ELI project), or at next-generation high-energy particle accelerators (e.g. the SLAC/FACET-II facility).
The plasma systems under scrutiny have in common a strong coupling between energetic particles, photons and quantum electrodynamic effects. They will be simulated numerically using a particle-in-cell (PIC) code developed at CEA/DAM over the past years. Besides the collective effects characteristic of plasmas, this code describes a number of gamma-ray photon emission and electron-positron pair creation processes. The purpose of this PhD project is to treat additional photon-particle and photon-photon interaction processes, and then to examine thoroughly their impact and interplay in various experimental and astrophysical configurations.