We exploit the many-body self-consistent Green's function method to analyze finite-temperature properties of infinite nuclear matter and to explore the behavior of the thermal index used to simulate thermal effects in equations of state for astrophysical applications. We show how the thermal index is both density and temperature dependent, unlike often considered, and we provide an error estimate based on our ab initio calculations. The inclusion of many-body forces is found to be critical for the density dependence of the thermal index. We also compare our results to a parametrization in terms of the density dependence of the nucleon effective mass. Our study questions the validity of predictions made for the gravitational-wave signal from neutron-star merger simulations with a constant thermal index.
Date of publication:
Phys. Rev. C 100, 025805 (2019)