why multipole first

homepage Forums a nucleus with a general shape ? why multipole first

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    Joeri
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    The nucleus electron interaction can be quite complicated, especially if the nucleus has a complicated shape. For that reason it is usefull to first expand this term in a multipole expansion so that these terms are easier to work with. Moreover, to apply perturbation theory, we need small perturbations and we know that the multipole expansion will converge, so further terms in the expansion will be small. The first term in the expansion will be the largest, but this one can be solved without perturbation theory because it is the case of the nucleus being a point, and for this we solved the hydrogen atom in the bachelors course.

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