Vacuum polarization effects on meson propagators

R. J. Furnstahl, C. J. Horowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

83 Scopus citations


The stability of uniform nuclear matter in the relativistic Hartree approximation to the Walecka model is investigated by calculating the meson propagators in the one-loop approximation. In this renormalizable model, Dirac nucleons interact with neutral scalar and vector mesons. At the one-loop level, nuclear matter is found to be unstable to short-wavelength modes because of vacuum polarization effects. This occurs at momenta greater than twice the free-nucleon mass. The onset of instability is pushed to larger momenta with increasing baryon density as the nucleon effective mass decreases. The implications of short-range correlations and vertex corrections are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)632-652
Number of pages21
JournalNuclear Physics A
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Aug 1988
Externally publishedYes


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