Understanding the fusion cross section among light nuclei around the Coulomb barrier
Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare – Laboratori Nazionali del Sud, via S. Sofia 62, 95123 Catania, Italy
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Published online: 22 November 2017
In this work we investigate fusion induced by a radioactive 8Li projectile on a 4He gas target, at center-of-mass energies between 0.6 and 5 MeV. The main result is the tendency of the dimensionless fusion cross section to form well visible plateaus alternated to steep rises. This is likely to be the most genuine consequence of the discrete nature of the intervening angular momenta observed so far in fusion reactions right above the Coulomb barrier. A partial-wave analysis, exclusively based on a pure quantal penetration fusion model, identifies a remarkably low-height barrier. Indeed, these plateaus allow enhanced experimental sensitivity to the fusion barrier given that the most barrier-sensitive lowest partial waves are well separated. We expect that the present results for 8Li+4He will promote further investigations of the fusion reaction mechanism between very light ions at energies much below the interaction barrier. For the moment, we believe that understanding the plateau origin in the cross section above the barrier will almost certainly be useful to corroborate the extrapolation to the important astrophysical region below the Coulomb barrier, not only in the case of the 8Li+4He fusion but also for other systems, such as the 12C+12C.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
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