Beyond-mean-field approaches for nuclear neutrinoless double beta decay in the standard mechanism

J. M. Yao, J. Meng, Y. F. Niu, P. Ring

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Nuclear weak decays provide important probes to fundamental symmetries in nature. A precise description of these processes in atomic nuclei requires comprehensive knowledge on both the strong and weak interactions in the nuclear medium and on the dynamics of quantum many-body systems. In particular, an observation of the hypothetical double beta decay without emission of neutrinos (0νββ) would unambiguously demonstrate the Majorana nature of neutrinos and the existence of the lepton-number-violation process. It would also provide unique information on the ordering and absolute scale of neutrino masses. The next-generation tonne-scale experiments with sensitivity up to 1028 years after a few years of running will probably provide a definite answer to these fundamental questions based on our current knowledge on the nuclear matrix element (NME), the precise determination of which is a challenge to nuclear theory. Beyond-mean-field approaches have been frequently adapted for the study of nuclear structure and decay throughout the nuclear chart for several decades. In this review, we summarize the status of beyond-mean-field calculations of the NMEs of 0νββ decay assuming the standard mechanism of an exchange of light Majorana neutrinos. The challenges and prospects in the extension and application of beyond-mean-field approaches for 0νββ decay are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103965
JournalProgress in Particle and Nuclear Physics
StatePublished - Sep 2022


  • Neutrino mass
  • Nuclear double beta decay
  • Nuclear models


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