The study of very unstable nuclei is exciting interest in many labs throughout the world. When the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee (NSAC) published its long‐range plan a year ago, it noted that, until recently, nuclear physicists had primarily studied nuclei near stability and those rich in protons, although these nuclei represent less than a tenth of the nuclear systems expected to exist. Tightly bound nuclei are at the bottom of the so‐called valley of stability (See the figure on this page). “By adding either protons or neutrons one moves outward towards the ridges of the valley of stability, finally reaching the drip lines where the binding of nucleons [in the nucleus] ends,” NSAC wrote. With beams of short‐lived radioactive nuclei becoming available, NSAC declared, “The scientific opportunities made available by world‐class radioactive beams are extremely compelling and merit very high priority.”

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