Astronomers have made a great breakthrough in recreating the conditions that prevailed in the universe just after the Big Bang. The quark-gluon plasma was created in the laboratory.
An international research team has done this using the capabilities of the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), which is located at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in the USA. During a series of experiments, a powerful accelerator collided protons and neutrons in various configurations. As a result, ultra-hot, microscopic drops of so-called quark-gluon soup.
After numerous collisions of single protons, deuterons and helium-3 nuclei, the PHENIX detector detected plasma drops that exploded, resulting in emerging ellipses, triangles and circles. It is worth emphasizing here that these phenomena occurred at a temperature of billions of degrees Celsius. In this way, scientists could check the essence of cooling the quark-gluon plasma in just milliseconds after the Big Bang, which was later a key element in the formation of the first atoms of the elements.
Drops of quark-gluon soup were made in the laboratory. Fig. University of Colorado, Boulder.
This type of research has been conducted for almost 20 years. Similar experiments were also carried out some time ago at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the CERN institute in Geneva torrent sites directory. Only the protons themselves were struck together, which also produced the ideal fluid, i.e. quark-gluon soup. This was a big discovery, because it was previously thought that this could not be achieved by colliding only the protons themselves. Now scientists have decided to collide heavier structures with each other to learn more about the nature of these phenomena.