Prediction of two-neutron halos in the N = 28 isotones 40Mg and 39Na

Jagjit Singh, J. Casal, W. Horiuchi, N. R. Walet, W. Satuła

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The ground states of the nuclei Mg40 and Na39 are investigated using the hyperspherical formalism. Since they are located at the edge of the “big island of inversion”, we concentrate on whether we are likely to find two-neutron Borromean halos in these nuclei. A three-body model with effective n-n and Mg38+n interactions is built for Mg40 based on the available data. We also give predictions for the low-lying spectrum of Na38=37Na+n and two-neutron separation energy of the Na39 nucleus. Depending on parameter choice, we report an increase in the matter radii in the range 0.1 - 0.5 fm relative to those of the core nuclei. The results suggest a two-neutron halo structure in Mg40 for a subset of parameters, reinforcing the prediction of a Borromean halo nucleus. The calculations indicate that a two-neutron halo is even more likely for Na39. As expected, the halo is linked to the disappearance of the shell gap in these nuclei due to the inversion of the 2p3/2 and 1f7/2 orbitals. We study the total cross section for scattering of these nuclei from a carbon target using a Glauber model and show that these provide a clear signal to assess the halo structure.

Original languageEnglish
Article number138694
JournalPhysics Letters, Section B: Nuclear, Elementary Particle and High-Energy Physics
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024


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