Decoherence and entropy production in relativistic nuclear collisions


Journal Article

Short thermalization times of less than 1 fm/c for quark and gluon matter have been suggested by recent experiments at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider. It has been difficult to justify this rapid thermalization in first-principle calculations based on perturbation theory or the color glass condensate picture. Here, we address the related question of the decoherence of the gluon field, which is a necessary component of thermalization. We present a simplified leading-order computation of the decoherence time of a gluon ensemble subject to an incoming flux of Weizsäcker-Williams gluons. We also discuss the entropy produced during the decoherence process and its relation to the entropy in the final state that has been measured experimentally. © 2009 The American Physical Society.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Fries, RJ; Müller, B; Schäfer, A

Published Date

  • March 3, 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 79 / 3

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1089-490X

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0556-2813

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1103/PhysRevC.79.034904

Citation Source

  • Scopus