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Symmetry 2009, 1(1), 64-105; doi:10.3390/sym1010064

Nuclei, Primes and the Random Matrix Connection

1,* and 2
1 The Henry Koerner Center for Emeritus Faculty, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520, USA 2 Department of Mathematics and Statistics, Williams College, Williamstown, MA 01267, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 16 July 2009 / Revised: 3 September 2009 / Accepted: 18 September 2009 / Published: 20 September 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers: Symmetry Concepts and Applications)
Download PDF [563 KB, uploaded 21 September 2009]


In this article, we discuss the remarkable connection between two very different fields, number theory and nuclear physics. We describe the essential aspects of these fields, the quantities studied, and how insights in one have been fruitfully applied in the other. The exciting branch of modern mathematics – random matrix theory – provides the connection between the two fields. We assume no detailed knowledge of number theory, nuclear physics, or random matrix theory; all that is required is some familiarity with linear algebra and probability theory, as well as some results from complex analysis. Our goal is to provide the inquisitive reader with a sound overview of the subjects, placing them in their historical context in a way that is not traditionally given in the popular and technical surveys.
Keywords: Random Matrix Theory; Nuclear Physics; L-functions. MSC: 11M26 (primary); 11B52 (secondary) Random Matrix Theory; Nuclear Physics; L-functions. MSC: 11M26 (primary); 11B52 (secondary)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Firk, F.W.K.; Miller, S.J. Nuclei, Primes and the Random Matrix Connection. Symmetry 2009, 1, 64-105.

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