Screening in thermonuclear reaction rates in the sun

Andrei V. Gruzinov, John N. Bahcall

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    We evaluate the effect of electrostatic screening by ions and electrons on low-Z thermonuclear reactions in the Sun. We use a mean field formalism and calculate the electron density of the screening cloud using the appropriate density matrix equation of quantum statistical mechanics. Because of well-understood physical effects that are included for the first time in our treatment, the calculated enhancement of reaction rates does not agree with the frequently used interpolation formulae. Our result does agree, within small uncertainties, with Salpeter's weak screening formula. If weak screening is used instead of the commonly employed screening prescription of Graboske et al., the predicted 8B neutrino flux is increased by 7% and the predicted chlorine rate is increased by 0.4 SNU.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)996-1001
    Number of pages6
    JournalAstrophysical Journal
    Issue number2 PART I
    StatePublished - 1998


    • Nuclear reactions, nucleosynthesis, abundances
    • Sun: abundances
    • Sun: interior

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Astronomy and Astrophysics
    • Space and Planetary Science


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