Talk by Aleksi Kurkela (McGill) - HET journal club – Niels Bohr Institute - University of Copenhagen

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Niels Bohr Institute > Calendar > 2012 > Talk by Aleksi Kurkela...

Talk by Aleksi Kurkela (McGill) - HET journal club

Thermalization in heavy ion collisions at very high energies

Hydrodynamical analysis of experimental data of ultrarelativistic heavy ion collisions seems to indicate that the hot QCD matter created in the collisions thermalizes very quickly. Theoretically, we have no idea why this should be true. In my talk, I will describe how the thermalization takes place in the most theoretically clean limit -- that of large nuclei at asymptotically high energy per nucleon, where the system is described by weak-coupling QCD. In this limit, plasma instabilities dominate the dynamics from immediately after the collision until well after the plasma becomes nearly in equilibrium at time t ~ alpha_s^(-5/2) Q^(-1).