Feeds

Theorists dazzled by 'perfect' liquid

Quarks + Gluons = new state of matter?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

US Researchers say they have created a new state of matter at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) in the Brookhaven National Laboratory.

The scientists used the machine to hurl gold ions at other gold ions and, in the manner of particle physicists, they watched to see what happened next.

The resulting mix of quarks and gluons did not behave quite as expected, Spacedaily.com reports. Theorists predict that just after the big bang, there would have existed a quark-gluon plasma, and some theorists argue that this is what the researchers have discovered.

However, scientists say that the matter seems to be more like a dense liquid. The particles show a tendency to move collectively when subjected to pressure, for instance.

"The truly stunning finding at RHIC that the new state of matter created in the collisions of gold ions is more like a liquid than a gas gives us a profound insight into the earliest moments of the universe," notes Dr Raymond Orbach, director of the Department of Energy office of science.

The liquid is also unusual in that its flow properties appear to match hydrodynamic models rather too well. Researchers say that it is nearly "perfect" in this respect.

"In fact, the degree of collective interaction, rapid thermalisation, and extremely low viscosity of the matter being formed at RHIC make this the most nearly perfect liquid ever observed," said Sam Aronson, Brookhaven's associate laboratory director.

Aronson went on to explain that the matter could still be a quark-gluon plasma, just a slightly different form to that predicted by theory.

You can read more here at Spacedaily.com. ®

Related stories

Boffins five quarks short of a sub-atomic particle
Quantum crypto comes to Blighty
Scientists lighten up on dark energy

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
China building SUPERSONIC SUBMARINE that travels in a BUBBLE
Shanghai to San Fran in two hours would be a trick, though
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Galileo, Galileo! Galileo, Galileo! Galileo fit to go. Magnifico
I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me. But at least I can find my way with ESA GPS by 2017
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?