Prediction of astrophysical reaction rates : Methods, data needs, and consequences for nucleosynthesis studies
Hoffman, R. D.
The majority of nuclear reactions in astrophysics involve unstable nuclei which are not fully accessible by experiments yet. Therefore, there is high demand for reliable predictions of cross sections and reaction rates by theoretical means. The majority of reactions can be treated in the framework of the statistical model (HauserFeshbach). The global parametrizations of the nuclear properties needed for predictions far off stability probe our understanding of the strong force and take it to its limit.The sensitivity of astrophysical scenarios to nuclear inputs is illustrated in the framework of a detailed nucleosynthesis study in type II supernovae. Abundances resulting from calculations in the same explosion model with two different sets of reaction rates are compared. I(ey reactions and required nuclear information are identified.