What we do...

View of Alexandr Nikolaev, Swansea University, UK..

The matter which surrounds us in the everyday life is very complex from the physical point of view and has several structure levels: molecules, which are built from atoms and electronic bonds; atoms, which consist of nucleus and electron orbitals; nucleus, which are made of protons and neutrons (i.e. nucleons); nucleons, which consist of quarks and gluons. To get more knowledge of the physics on the quark level heavy nucleus are being accelerated close to the speed of light and then collided on the modern experimental facilities, such as Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) at BNL or the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN. State of matter right after the collision is very similar to what happened during the Early Universe stage and is characterized by non-trivial properties: the quarks are strongly coupled, but the ratio of shear viscosity over entropy density is surprisingly small. The theory, describing what happens between the quarks in such a hot matter or at the very first stage of heavy ions collision, is Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD). There is a formulation of QCD, called lattice QCD, which allows a direct calculations of the physics of strong interactions by numerical simulation on powerful supercomputers. Such calculations together with experimental high energy physics are complementary to each other and may provide us a better understanding of sub-atomic, strong interaction level of physics.