T-2, Nuclear and Particle Physics, Astrophysics and Cosmology

Unraveling Nuclear Fission

Marc Verriere

Nuclear fission is the splitting of a heavy nucleus into two or more fragments that releases a substantial amount of energy. The understanding of fission is ubiquitous in modern applications, critical for national defense, energy generation, and reactor safeguards. Fission also plays an important role in understanding the astrophysical formation of elements in the universe. Eighty years after the discovery of the fission process, its theoretical understanding from first principles remains a great challenge. In this seminar, I will present promising new approaches that can be used to describe the fission process. I will show that these approaches can be improved by combining the best aspects of each, thereby providing a new avenue for future insights. I end with a discussion of how machine learning techniques can be incorporated into the modeling of fission systems to enhance the predictability of microscopic calculations.


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