May 11th, 2006-
Seminar room (A34)
The perfectly liquid Quark-Gluon Plasma
According to the American Physical Society, the top physic story for 2005
has been the discovery of the Quark-Gluon Plasma, a deconfined state
of quarks and gluons at high temperature, at the Relativistic
Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC).
The fireball made in these collisions -- which reproduces to a good
extent the conditions of the primordial universe only a few microseconds
after the big bang -- was not a gas of weakly interacting quarks and
gluons as earlier expected, but something more like a "perfect" liquid
of strongly interacting quarks and gluons.
In this talk, I will review the evidence leading to the claimed discovery
of the "perfectly fluid QGP" and the new theoretical and experimental
challenges brought forward by such a discovery. I will conclude with a
brief glimpse at the future of heavy-ion collisions at the Large Hadron
Collider (LHC) of Geneva, which will soon begin its operations.