Paul Mantica is a Professor at Michigan State University with appointments in the Department of Chemistry and National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory (NSCL). He received his Ph.D. in Nuclear Chemistry in 1990 from the University of Maryland. Mantica has been studying the ground state properties of rare isotopes for more than 20 years, and his present research activities involving measuring beta-decay properties and nuclear moments of short-lived radionuclides. He is presently Department Head of the Experimental Nuclear Science Group at NSCL, and serves as the National Director of the Nuclear and Radiochemistry Summer Schools, which are sponsored by the American Chemical Society and the U.S. Department of Energy.
Experiments show that spherical and nonspherical states of a light nucleus near neutron number 28 coexist at the same energy, challenging the usefulness of the notion of stable and persistent “magic numbers.”