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The mission

Create highest baryon densities in nucleus-nucleus collisions. Explore the properties of super-dense nuclear matter. Search for in-medium  modification of hadrons. Search for the transition from dense hadronic  matter to quark-gluon matter, and for the critical endpoint in the phase diagram of strongly interacting matter.


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The physics

Fundamental aspects of Quantum-Chromo-Dynamics and astrophysics: The equation-of-state of strongly interacting matter at high baryon densities, the restoration of chiral symmetry, the origin of hadron masses, the confinement of quarks in hadrons, the structure of neutron stars, the dynamics of core-collapse supernovae.

The challenge

Measure rare and penetrating probes such as dilepton pairs from light vector mesons and charmonium, open charm, multistrange hyperons, together with collective hadron flow and fluctuations in heavy-ion collisions at rates of up to 10 Million reactions per second.


The technique

Tracking and vertex reconstruction with Silicon pixel and strip detectors in a magnetic field, electron identification with Ring Imaging Cherenkov detectors and Transition Radiation Detectors, or, alternatively, muon identification with a muon detection system, time-of flight measurement with diamond strip detectors and Resistive Plate Chamber arrays. High speed signal processing and data acquisition.

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