University of Birmingham > Talks@bham > Particle Physics Seminars > Discovery of the Quark-Gluon Plasma

Discovery of the Quark-Gluon Plasma

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Prof Ian Kenyon.

Under normal conditions quarks, the fundamental building blocks of nuclear matter, are confined in particles such as protons and neutrons and free quarks have never been observed experimentally. However, QCD , the theory of the strong interaction, predicts that under extreme conditions of density and temperature nuclear matter will ‘melt’ into a deconfined state of quarks and gluons known as a Quark-Gluon Plasma (QGP). It is believed this exotic state of matter would have existed in the very early Universe up to 10 micro-seconds after the Big Bang.

Over the past few decades, physicists have been trying to recreate and study the QGP by colliding heavy nuclei together at ever increasing energies using particle accelerators such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN . Professor Dinesh Kumar Srivastava will review some of the latest experimental results and the evidence for the formation of a quark-gluon plasma in ultra-relativistic heavy-ion collisions.

This talk is part of the Particle Physics Seminars series.

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