Dr Esra Yuksel

Lecturer in Theoretical Nuclear Physics
PhD (YTU, 2016)
+44 (0)1483 689412
05 AA 04


My qualifications

PhD, Nuclear Physics
Yildiz Technical University (YTU)

Previous roles

2022 - 2022
Assoc. Prof.
Department of Physics, Yildiz Technical University, Istanbul,Turkey
2010 - 2022
Research and Teaching Assistant
Department of Physics, Yildiz Technical University, Istanbul,Turkey
04 September 2017 - 05 November 2018
Postdoctoral Researcher
University of Zagreb, Physics Department, Croatia
2011 - 2016
Visiting Researcher
L'Institut de Physique Nucléaire d'Orsay, IPN-Orsay, France


Research interests


Postgraduate research supervision



Ante Ravlić, Esra Yüksel, Tamara Nikšić, Nils Paar (2024)Global properties of nuclei at finite-temperature within the covariant energy density functional theory, In: Physical review. C109014318

In stellar environments nuclei appear at finite temperatures, becoming extremely hot in core-collapse supernovae and neutron-star mergers. However, due to theoretical and computational complexity, most model calculations of nuclear properties are performed at zero temperature, while those existing at finite temperatures are limited only to selected regions of the nuclide chart. In this study we perform the global calculation of nuclear properties for even-even 8 104 nuclei at temperatures in range 0 T 2 MeV. Calculations are based on the finite-temperature relativistic Hartree-Bogoliubov model supplemented by the Bonche-Levit-Vautherin vapor subtraction procedure. We find that near the neutron-drip line the continuum states have significant contribution already at moderate temperature T ≈ 1 MeV, thus emphasizing the necessity of the vapor subtraction procedure. Results include neutron emission lifetimes, quadrupole deformations, neutron-skin thickness, proton and neutron pairing gaps, entropy and excitation energy. Up to the temperature T ≈ 1 MeV, the nuclear landscape is influenced only moderately by the finite-temperature effects, mainly by reducing the pairing correlations. As the temperature increases further, the effects on nuclear structures become pronounced, reducing both the deformations and the shell effects.

Amandeep Kaur, Esra Yüksel, Nils Paar (2024)Electric dipole transitions in the relativistic quasiparticle random-phase approximation at finite temperature, In: Physical review. C109014314

Finite temperature results in various effects on the properties of nuclear structure and excitations of relevance for nuclear processes in hot stellar environments. Here, we introduce the self-consistent finite temperature relativistic quasiparticle random phase approximation (FT-RQRPA) based on relativistic energy density functional with point coupling interaction for describing the temperature effects in electric dipole (E1) transitions. We perform a study of E1 excitations in the temperature range T = 0–2 MeV for the selected closed- and open-shell nuclei ranging from 40Ca to 60Ca and 100Sn to 140Sn by including both thermal and pairing effects. The isovector giant dipole resonance strength is slightly modified for the considered range of temperature, while new low-energy peaks emerge for E < 12 MeV with non-negligible strength in neutron-rich nuclei at high temperatures. The analysis of relevant two-quasiparticle configurations discloses how new excitation channels open due to thermal unblocking of states at finite temperature. The study also examines the isospin and temperature dependence of electric dipole polarizability (αD), resulting in systematic increase in the values of αD with increasing temperature, with a more pronounced effect observed in neutron-rich nuclei. The FT-RQRPA introduced in this work will open perspectives for microscopic calculation of γ -ray strength functions at finite temperatures relevant for nuclear reaction studies.

Ante Ravlić, Esra Yuksel, Tamara Nikšić, Nils Paar (2023)Influence of the symmetry energy on the nuclear binding energies and the neutron drip line position, In: Physical review. C108054305 Amer Physical Soc

A clear connection can be established between properties of nuclear matter and finite-nuclei observables, such as the correlation between the slope of the symmetry energy and the dipole polarizability, or between compressibility and the isoscalar monopole giant resonance excitation energy. Establishing a connection between realistic atomic nuclei and an idealized infinite nuclear matter leads to a better understanding of underlying physical mechanisms that govern nuclear dynamics. In this work, we aim to study the dependence of the binding energies and related quantities (e.g., location of drip lines, the total number of bound even-even nuclei) on the symmetry energy S2(rho). The properties of finite nuclei are calculated by employing the relativistic Hartree-Bogoliubov model, assuming even-even axial and reflection symmetric nuclei. Calculations are performed by employing two families of relativistic energy density functionals, based on different effective Lagrangians, constrained to a specific symmetry energy at the saturation density J within the interval of 30-36 MeV. Nuclear binding energies and related quantities of bound nuclei are calculated between 8 Z 104 from the two-proton to the two-neutron drip line. As the neutron drip line is approached, the interactions with stiffer J tend to predict more bound nuclei, resulting in a systematic shift of the two-neutron drip line towards more neutron-rich nuclei. Consequentially, a correlation between the number of bound nuclei Nnucl and S2(rho) is established for a set of functionals constrained using the similar optimization procedures. The direction of the relationship between the number of bound nuclei and the symmetry energy highly depends on the density under consideration.

Recent precise parity-violating electron scattering experiments on 48Ca (CREX) and 208Pb (PREX-II) provide a new insight on the formation of neutron skin in nuclei. Within the energy density functional (EDF) framework, we investigate the implications of CREX and PREX-II data on nuclear matter symmetry energy and isovector properties of finite nuclei: neutron skin thickness and dipole polarizability. The weak-charge form factors from the CREX and PREX-II experiments are employed directly in constraining the relativistic density-dependent point coupling EDFs. The EDF established with the CREX data acquires considerably smaller values of the symmetry energy parameters, neutron skin thickness and dipole polarizability both for 48Ca and 208Pb, in comparison to the EDF obtained using the PREX-II data, and previously established EDFs. Presented analysis shows that CREX and PREX-II experiments could not provide consistent constraints for the isovector sector of the EDFs, and further theoretical and experimental studies are required.

Ante Ravlić, Esra Yuksel, Tamara Nikšić, Nils Paar (2023)Expanding the limits of nuclear stability at finite temperature, In: Nature communications14(1) Nature Publishing Group

Properties of nuclei in hot stellar environments such as supernovae or neutron star mergers are largely unexplored. Since it is poorly understood how many protons and neutrons can be bound together in hot nuclei, we investigate the limits of nuclear existence (drip lines) at finite temperature. Here, we present mapping of nuclear drip lines at temperatures up to around 20 billion kelvins using the relativistic energy density functional theory (REDF), including treatment of thermal scattering of nucleons in the continuum. With extensive computational effort, the drip lines are determined using several REDFs with different underlying interactions, demonstrating considerable alterations of the neutron drip line with temperature increase, especially near the magic numbers. At temperatures T ≲ 12 billion kelvins, the interplay between the properties of nuclear effective interaction, pairing, and temperature effects determines the nuclear binding. At higher temperatures, we find a surprizing result that the total number of bound nuclei increases with temperature due to thermal shell quenching. Our findings provide insight into nuclear landscape for hot nuclei, revealing that the nuclear drip lines should be viewed as limits that change dynamically with temperature. It is interesting and important to understand how the properties of nuclei and their stability change with temperature. Here the authors report their theoretical study of hot nuclei and the drip lines that limit the nuclear existence at finite temperature.

Esra Yuksel, Florian Mercier, Jean-Paul Ebran, Elias Khan (2022)Clustering in nuclei at finite temperature, In: Physical review C106(5)054309 APS

We investigate the localization and clustering features in 20 Ne ( N = Z ) and neutron-rich 32 Ne nuclei at zero and finite temperatures. The finite temperature Hartree-Bogoliubov theory is used with the relativistic density-dependent meson-nucleon coupling functional DD-ME2. It is shown that clustering features gradually weaken with increasing temperature and disappear when the shape phase transition occurs. Considering thermal fluctuations in the density profiles, the clustering features vanish at lower temperatures, compared to the case without thermal fluctuations. The effect of the pairing correlations on the nucleon localization and the formation of cluster structures are also studied at finite temperatures. Due to the inclusion of pairing in the calculations, cluster structures are preserved until the critical temperatures for the shape phase transition are reached. Above the critical temperature of the shape phase transition, the clustering features suddenly disappear, which differs from the results without pairing.