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26 Jun 2012

Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) Produces Hottest Man-Made Temperature Ever

Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC), an atom-smasher, just made it to the Guinness book of records for having produced “the hottest man-made temperature ever”. How hot could it be? Real hot, I say. The temperature it produced is 250,000 times hotter than the center of the sun. That is quite a feat, isn’t it?
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To arrive at this temperature, Gold Nuclei (Neutrons + Protons) at the near speed of light were set in motion with in the RHIC, which is a 2.4-mile (3.9 kilometers) underground track, until they smashed into each other. When this collision occurs, the enormous amount of energy is released and it ends up melting the neutrons and protons inside the gold nuclei to produce a mix of quarks and gluons. This mix resembles the friction-free primordial plasma that might have been a result of the Big-Bang. It showed perfect liquid behavior, something the scientists were not expecting.

The process produced a temperature of 7.2 trillion degrees Fahrenheit. Yeah, you read it right. Don’t even think about going anywhere close to it. (Not that you will!) Anyway, it looks like RHIC cannot hold this record for too long. The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland smashes lead ions together at near light-speed and the team is working with a hope to break this record someday.

Source: Gizmodo

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