Lattice Field Theory and Hadronic Physics. Grant

Lattice Field Theory and Hadronic Physics. .


  • Quarks carry a color charge and nuclear matter is formed from the binding of colored quarks mediated by gluons. Quantum Chromo-Dynamics (QCD) is the theory that describes the interaction of these color charges. Experiments have shown than quarks come in three colors but all nuclear matter is color neutral. Separation of nuclear matter into quarks and gluons needs very large energies similar to what was present in the early universe. Since solving QCD with three colors have proven to be very difficult and since qualitative properties do not depend on the number of colors, an attempt following 't Hooft is made to solve QCD for a very large number of colors. Research using lattice gauge theory has proven to be quite useful in extracting several physics results in the last six years. We will continue to make progress and focus on the phase of the theory that exists at high densities (like inside neutron stars) and high temperatures (close to the big-bang). Numerical computations will be used to study quark matter in this phase and we will attempt to make qualitative comparisons with current experiments in RHIC and CERN. Since QCD in the limit of large number of colors is closely related to recent developments in string theory we will also be able to make connections between field theory and string theory. We have already shown that quarks form a colorless condensate and we have also succeeded in computing the properties of the lightest colorless particle - the pion. We will attempt to compute the masses of other heavier colorless particles as part of this proposal. We will also attempt to study the effect of temperature thereby showing evidence for the formation of nuclear matter from a primordial soup of quarks and gluons.The scientific methods involve analytical calculations and numerical computations. A graduate student at FIU working toward a Ph.D will learn quantum field theory and numerical techniques and will make significant contributions. Computer clusters will be used for numerical computations and the results obtained as part of this proposal will be presented at international conferences in nuclear and particle physics.

date/time interval

  • June 1, 2009 - May 31, 2014

administered by

sponsor award ID

  • 0854744