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##### Light element (Z=1,2) production from spontaneous ternary fission of $^{252}$Cf

**Authors**: G. R\"opke; J.B. Natowitz; H. Pais

**Ref.**: Eur. Phys. J. A **56**, 238 (2020)

**Abstract**: The yields of light elements (Z=1,2) obtained from spontaneous ternary fission of 252Cf are treated within a nonequilibrium approach, and the contribution of unstable nuclei and excited bound states is taken into account. These light cluster yields may be used to probe dense matter, and to infer in-medium corrections such as Pauli blocking which is determined by the nucleon density. Continuum correlations are calculated from scattering phase shifts using the Beth-Uhlenbeck formula, and the effect of medium modification is estimated. The relevant distribution is reconstructed from the measured yields of isotopes. This describes the state of the nucleon system at scission and cluster formation, using only three Lagrange parameters which are the nonequilibrium counterparts of the temperature and chemical potentials, as defined in thermodynamic equilibrium. We concluded that a simple nuclear statistical equilibrium model neglecting continuum correlations and medium effects is not able to describe the measured distribution of H and He isotopes. Moreover, the freeze-out concept may serve as an important ingredient to the nonequilibrium approach using the relevant statistical operator concept.