National Superconducting
Cyclotron Laboratory


Theoretical nuclear science seeks to understand and predict the structure, dynamics, and origins of visible matter in the universe.  A few of the questions at the forefront of theoretical nuclear science are as follows: 

  • How are quarks and gluons confined within protons and neutrons?
  • How do protons and neutrons bind to form nuclei and what are the limits of stability?
  • How can we accurately predict complex nuclear reactions?
  • Why does emergent collective behavior appear in quantum many body systems?
  • How and where were the chemical elements formed in the universe? 
  • What are the phases of nuclear matter under extreme conditions?  

Our nuclear theory group has over 60 members, the group covers a large territory and has well established worldwide collaborations. In addition to collaborating with our experimental colleagues at FRIB, our research program includes topics such as quantum chromodynamics, fundamental symmetries, physics beyond the Standard Model, nuclear forces, chiral symmetry, structure and reactions of atomic nuclei, simulations of cataclysmic astrophysical events, the creation of new elements, heavy ion collisions and matter under extreme conditions, and emergent phenomena such as superfluidity and collective behavior. 

We are also investigating new technologies and algorithms in high performance computing, machine learning, and quantum computing and their impact on the most challenging problems of nuclear science.  Many of our former students and postdoctoral researchers have gone on to become prominent scientists at universities and laboratories in nuclear science as well as leaders in many other fields of science, technology, finance, education, and industry.

If you wish to visit the NSCL, please visit our  Directions page.

640 South Shaw Lane, East Lansing, MI 48824; Tel: 517-908-7429, Fax: 517-353-5967

Please visit our YouTube channel and Research Highlights to learn more.

Learning what makes the nucleus tick | MSUToday | Michigan State University:  Two FRIB researchers create computer model to help explain and make nuclear discoveries

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If you have further questions, please contact us.