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New Findings on Hot Quark Soup Produced at RHIC

Scientists to present latest findings from heavy ion collisions at APS meeting Feb. 15

Simulation of a collision between two gold ions

Click on the image to download a high-resolution version. Simulation of a collision between two gold ions

EVENT: Scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory and the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), the world’s largest particle accelerator dedicated to nuclear physics research, will present compelling new findings about the nature of the “perfect” liquid created in near-light-speed collisions of gold ions at RHIC.

WHEN: Monday, February 15, 2010, 9:30 a.m.

WHERE: The "April 2010" meeting of the American Physical Society (APS), Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, Washington, D.C., Press Room/Briefing Room, Park Tower 8222

DETAILS: The Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) is a 2.4-mile-circumference particle accelerator/collider that has been operating at Brookhaven Lab since 2000, delivering collisions of heavy ions, protons, and other particles to an international team of physicists investigating the basic structure and fundamental forces of matter. In 2005, RHIC physicists announced that the matter created in RHIC’s most energetic collisions behaves like a nearly “perfect” liquid in that it has extraordinarily low viscosity, or resistance to flow. Since then, the scientists have been taking a closer look at this remarkable form of matter, which last existed some 13 billion years ago, a mere fraction of a second after the Big Bang. At this press event, scientists will present new findings, including the first measurement of temperature very early in the collision events, and their implications for the nature of this early-universe matter.

PHONE-IN OPTION: For reporters unable to attend the press briefing in person, we have arranged a call-in line: (800) 944-8766 / password 21425. If you experience problems, contact Jason Bardi (, cell: 858-775-4080).

SCIENTIFIC TALKS: Following the press briefing, scientists will give technical talks on the nature of these measurements in APS sessions P7: “Mini-Symposium: Electromagnetic Radiation from Quark-Gluon Plasma” and Q7: “Mini-Symposium: Exotic Phenomena in High Energy Nuclear Collisions,” beginning at 10:45 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., respectively. Both sessions are in room Delaware A of the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel.

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