Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Detecting The Traces Of Mystery Matter

Date:
August 4, 2005
Source:
University of California - Davis
Summary:
Using high-speed collisions between gold atoms, scientists think they have re-created one of the most mysterious forms of matter in the universe -- quark-gluon plasma. This form of matter was present during the first microsecond of the Big Bang and may still exist at the cores of dense, distant stars. UC Davis physics professor Daniel Cebra is one of 543 collaborators on the research. His main role was building the electronic listening devices that collect information about the collisions, a job he compared to "troubleshooting 120,000 stereo systems."

A splash of subatomic particles is created by the collision of gold atom nuclei traveling at nearly the speed of light in Brookhaven National Laboratory's Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider. (Brookhaven National Laboratory/STAR Collaboration/courtesy graph)

Using high-speed collisions between gold atoms, scientists thinkthey have re-created one of the most mysterious forms of matter in theuniverse -- quark-gluon plasma. This form of matter was present duringthe first microsecond of the Big Bang and may still exist at the coresof dense, distant stars.

Related Articles


UC Davis physics professor Daniel Cebra is one of 543 collaboratorson the research. His main role was building the electronic listeningdevices that collect information about the collisions, a job hecompared to "troubleshooting 120,000 stereo systems."

Now, using those detectors, "we look for trends in what happenedduring the collision to learn what the quark-gluon plasma is like," hesaid.

"We have been trying to melt neutrons and protons, the buildingblocks of atomic nuclei, into their constituent quarks and gluons,"Cebra said. "We needed a lot of heat, pressure and energy, alllocalized in a small space."

The scientists produced the right conditions with head-on collisionsbetween the nuclei of gold atoms. The resulting quark-gluon plasmalasted an extremely short time -- less than 10-20 seconds, Cebra said.But the collision left tracings that the scientists could measure.

"Our work is like accident reconstruction," Cebra said. "We seefragments coming out of a collision, and we construct that informationback to very small points."

Quark-gluon plasma was expected to behave like a gas, but the datashows a more liquid-like substance. The plasma is less compressiblethan expected, which means that it may be able to support the cores ofvery dense stars.

"If a neutron star gets large and dense enough, it may go through aquark phase, or it may just collapse into a black hole," Cebra said."To support a quark star, the quark-gluon plasma would need rigidity.We now expect there to be quark stars, but they will be hard to study.If they exist, they're semi-infinitely far away."

The project is led by Brookhaven National Laboratory and LawrenceBerkeley National Laboratory, with collaborators at 52 institutionsworldwide. The work was done in Brookhaven's Relativistic Heavy IonCollider (RHIC).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Davis. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Davis. "Detecting The Traces Of Mystery Matter." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 August 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050730093720.htm>.
University of California - Davis. (2005, August 4). Detecting The Traces Of Mystery Matter. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050730093720.htm
University of California - Davis. "Detecting The Traces Of Mystery Matter." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050730093720.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Matter & Energy News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Building Google Into Cars

Building Google Into Cars

Reuters - Business Video Online (Dec. 19, 2014) Google's next Android version could become the standard that'll power your vehicle's entertainment and navigation features, Reuters has learned. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP Review: Nikon D750 and GoPro Hero 4

AP (Dec. 19, 2014) What to buy an experienced photographer or video shooter? There is some strong gear on the market from Nikon and GoPro. The AP's Ron Harris takes a closer look. (Dec. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Navy Unveils Robot Fish

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Dec. 18, 2014) The U.S. Navy unveils an underwater device that mimics the movement of a fish. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins