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Nuclear scattering via quantum computing

Peiyan WangWeijie DuWei ZuoJames P. Vary
Jan 2024
We propose a hybrid quantum-classical framework to solve the elastic scattering phase shift of two well-bound nuclei in an uncoupled channel. Within this framework, we develop a many-body formalism in which the continuum scattering states of the two colliding nuclei are regulated by a weak external harmonic oscillator potential with varying strength. Based on our formalism, we propose an approach to compute the eigenenergies of the low-lying scattering states of the relative motion of the colliding nuclei as a function of the oscillator strength of the confining potential. Utilizing the modified effective range expansion, we extrapolate the elastic scattering phase shift of the colliding nuclei from these eigenenergies to the limit when the external potential vanishes. In our hybrid approach, we leverage the advantage of quantum computing to solve for these eigenenergies from a set of many-nucleon Hamiltonian eigenvalue problems. These eigenenergies are inputs to classical computers to obtain the phase shift. We demonstrate our framework with two simple problems, where we implement the rodeo algorithm to solve the relevant eigenenergies with the IBM Qiskit quantum simulator. The results of both the spectra and the elastic scattering phase shifts agree well with other theoretical results.
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