We review quantum Monte Carlo methods for dealing with large shell model problems. These methods reduce the imaginary-time many-body evolution operator to a coherent superposition of one-body evolutions in fluctuating one-body fields; the resultant path integral is evaluated stochastically. We first discuss the motivation, formalism, and implementation of such Shell Model Monte Carlo (SMMC) methods. There then follows a sampler of results and insights obtained from a number of applications. These include the ground state and thermal properties of pf-shell nuclei, the thermal and rotational behavior of rare-earth and γ-soft nuclei, and the calculation of double beta-decay matrix elements. Finally, prospects for further progress in such calculations are discussed.
- Monte Carlo method
- Nuclear shell model
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Physics and Astronomy