Heavy dense QCD and nuclear matter on the lattice

Who: Owe Philipsen (Goethe University Frankfurt)
When: Monday, April 14, 2014 at 14:15
Where: The CP³ meeting room

At finite baryon density the fermion determinant of the QCD partition function is complex-valued. This so-called sign problem prohibits simulations of lattice QCD by Monte Carlo methods and is the reason that the QCD phase diagram remains largely unknown. Here I present a new method to deal with finite densities in two steps. First, an effective lattice theory of Polyakov loops is derived by means of combined strong coupling and hopping expansions. The theory is so far valid for heavy quarks only, but has a milder sign problem that can be dealt with by various algorithmic methods. As an application, the QCD deconfinement transition at finite temperature has been calculated for all baryon densities. Moreover, for the first time it is possible to describe the onset transition to cold nuclear matter at zero temperature as well as the nuclear equation of state and the nuclear binding energy directly from QCD.