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Phys Rev Lett. 2012 Sep 14;109(11):112501. Epub 2012 Sep 13.

New half-lives of r-process Zn and Ga isotopes measured with electromagnetic separation.

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Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996, USA.


The β decays of neutron-rich nuclei near the doubly magic (78)Ni were studied at the Holifield Radioactive Ion Beam Facility using an electromagnetic isobar separator. The half-lives of (82)Zn (228±10  ms), (83)Zn (117±20  ms), and (85)Ga (93±7  ms) were determined for the first time. These half-lives were found to be very different from the predictions of the global model used in astrophysical simulations. A new calculation was developed using the density functional model, which properly reproduced the new experimental values. The robustness of the new model in the (78)Ni region allowed us to extrapolate data for more neutron-rich isotopes. The revised analysis of the rapid neutron capture process in low entropy environments with our new set of measured and calculated half-lives shows a significant redistribution of predicted isobaric abundances strengthening the yield of A>140 nuclei.

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