Welcome to the ALICE collaboration

Our mission

Welcome to the ALICE website

The ALICE Collaboration has built a dedicated detector to exploit the unique physics potential of nucleus-nucleus collisions at LHC energies. Our aim is to study the physics of strongly interacting matter at the highest energy densities reached so far in the laboratory. In such condition, an extreme phase of matter - called the quark-gluon plasma - is formed. Our universe is thought to have been in such a primordial state for the first few millionths of a second after the Big Bang. The properties of such a phase are key issues for quantum chromodynamics, the understanding of confinement-deconfinement and chiral phase transitions. For this purpose, we are carrying out a comprehensive study of the hadrons, electrons, muons and photons produced in the collisions of heavy nuclei. ALICE is also studying proton-proton and proton-nucleus collisions both as a comparison with nucleus-nucleus collisions and in their own right.

Diversity and Inclusivity in ALICE

The ALICE Collaboration embraces and values the diversity of its team members and colleagues. We are committed to fostering an inclusive environment for all people regardless of their nationality/culture, profession, age/generation, family situation and gender, as well as individual differences such as but not limited to ethnic origin, sexual orientation, belief, disability, or opinions provided that they are consistent with the Organization’s values.


Latest ALICE Submissions

Pseudorapidity distributions of charged particles as a function of mid and forward rapidity mutiplicities in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02, 7 and 13 TeVThe multiplicity dependence of the pseudorapidity density of charged particles in proton-proton (pp) collisions at centre-of-mass energies $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02, 7 and 13 TeV measured by ALICE is reported. The analysis relies on track segments measured in the midrapidity range ($|\eta| < ~ 1.5$). Results are presented for inelastic events having at least one charged particle produced in the pseudorapidity interval $|\eta| < ~1$ ($\mathrm{INEL}_{>0}$). The multiplicity dependence of the pseudorapidy density of charged particles is measured with mid and forward rapidity multiplicity estimators, the latter being less affected by autocorrelations. A detailed comparison with predictions from the PYTHIA 8 and EPOS LHC event generators is also presented. Both generators provide a good description of the data.
Centrality dependence of J/$ψ$ and $ψ$(2S) production and nuclear modification in p-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}} =$ 8.16 TeVThe inclusive production of the J/$\psi$ and $\psi$(2S) charmonium states is studied as a function of centrality in p-Pb collisions at a centre-of-mass energy per nucleon pair $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}} = 8.16$ TeV at the LHC. The measurement is performed in the dimuon decay channel with the ALICE apparatus in the centre-of-mass rapidity intervals $-4.46 < ~ y_{\rm cms} < ~ -2.96$ (Pb-going direction) and $2.03 < ~ y_{\rm cms} < ~ 3.53$ (p-going direction), down to zero transverse momentum ($p_{\rm T}$). The J/$\psi$ and $\psi$(2S) production cross sections are evaluated as a function of the collision centrality, estimated through the energy deposited in the zero degree calorimeter located in the Pb-going direction. The $p_{\rm T}$-differential J/$\psi$ production cross section is measured at backward and forward rapidity for several centrality classes, together with the corresponding average $\langle p_{\rm T} \rangle$ and $\langle p^{2}_{\rm T} \rangle$ values. The nuclear effects affecting the production of both charmonium states are studied using the nuclear modification factor. In the p-going direction, a suppression of the production of both charmonium states is observed, which seems to increase from peripheral to central collisions. In the Pb-going direction, however, the centrality dependence is different for the two states: the nuclear modification factor of the J/$\psi$ increases from below unity in peripheral collisions to above unity in central collisions, while for the $\psi$(2S) it stays below or consistent with unity for all centralities with no significant centrality dependence. The results are compared with measurements in p-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}} = 5.02$ TeV and no significant dependence on the energy of the collision is observed. Finally, the results are compared with theoretical models implementing various nuclear matter effects.
Transverse-momentum and event-shape dependence of D-meson flow harmonics in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{NN}} = 5.02$ TeVThe elliptic and triangular flow coefficients $v_2$ and $v_3$ of prompt $D^{0}$, $D^{+}$, and $D^{*+}$ mesons were measured at midrapidity ($|y| < ~0.8$) in Pb-Pb collisions at the centre-of-mass energy per nucleon pair of $\sqrt{s_{NN}} = 5.02$ TeV with the ALICE detector at the LHC. The D mesons were reconstructed via their hadronic decays in the transverse momentum interval $1 < ~ p_{\rm T} < ~36$ GeV/$c$ in central (0-10%) and semi-central (30-50%) collisions. Compared to pions, protons, and J/$\psi$ mesons, the average D-meson $v_{n}$ harmonics are found to follow a mass ordering for $p_{\rm T} < ~3$ GeV/$c$, and to be similar to those of charged pions for higher $p_{\rm T}$. The coupling of the charm quark to the light quarks in the underlying medium is further investigated with the application of the event-shape engineering (ESE) technique to the D-meson $v_2$ and $p_{\rm T}$-differential yields. The D-meson $v_2$ is correlated with average bulk elliptic flow in both central and semi-central collisions. Within the current precision, the ratios of per-event D-meson yields in the ESE-selected and unbiased samples are found to be compatible with unity. All the measurements are found to be reasonably well described by theoretical calculations including the effects of charm-quark transport and the recombination of charm quarks with light quarks in a hydrodynamically expanding medium.
Constraining the Chiral Magnetic Effect with charge-dependent azimuthal correlations in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{\it{s}_{\mathrm{NN}}}$ = 2.76 and 5.02 TeVSystematic studies of charge-dependent two- and three-particle correlations in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{\it{s}_\mathrm{{NN}}} = $ 2.76 and 5.02 TeV used to probe the Chiral Magnetic Effect (CME) are presented. These measurements are performed for charged particles in the pseudorapidity ($\eta$) and transverse momentum ($p_{\rm{T}}$) ranges $\left|\eta \right| < ~ 0.8$ and $0.2 < ~ p_{\mathrm{T}} < ~ 5$ GeV/$c$. A significant charge-dependent signal that becomes more pronounced for peripheral collisions is reported for the CME-sensitive correlators $\gamma_{1,1} = \langle \cos (\varphi_{\alpha} +\varphi_{\beta} - 2\Psi_{2}) \rangle$ and $\gamma_{1,-3} = \langle \cos (\varphi_{\alpha} -3\varphi_{\beta} + 2\Psi_{2}) \rangle$. The results are used to estimate the contribution of background effects, associated with local charge conservation coupled to anisotropic flow modulations, to measurements of the CME. A blast-wave parametrisation that incorporates local charge conservation tuned to reproduce the centrality dependent background effects is not able to fully describe the measured $\gamma_{1,1}$. Finally, the charge and centrality dependence of mixed-harmonics three-particle correlations, of the form $\gamma_{1,2} = \langle \cos (\varphi_{\alpha} +2\varphi_{\beta} - 3\Psi_{3}) \rangle$, which are insensitive to the CME signal, verify again that background contributions dominate the measurement of $\gamma_{1,1}$.
J/$ψ$ elliptic and triangular flow in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.02 TeVThe inclusive J/$\psi$ elliptic ($v_2$) and triangular ($v_3$) flow coefficients measured at forward rapidity (2.5 $ < ~y < ~$ 4) and the $v_2$ measured at midrapidity ($|y| < ~$ 0.9) in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.02 TeV using the ALICE detector at the LHC are reported. The entire Pb-Pb data sample collected during Run 2 is employed, amounting to an integrated luminosity of 750 $\mu$b$^{-1}$ at forward rapidity and 93 $\mu$b$^{-1}$ at midrapidity. The results are obtained using the scalar product method and are reported as a function of transverse momentum $p_{\rm T}$ and collision centrality. At midrapidity, the J/$\psi$ $v_2$ is in agreement with the forward rapidity measurement. The centrality averaged results indicate a positive J/$\psi$ $v_3$ with a significance of more than 5$\sigma$ at forward rapidity in the $p_{\rm T}$ range $2 < ~p_{\rm T} < ~5$ GeV/$c$. The forward rapidity $v_2$, $v_3$, and $v_3$/$v_2$ results at low and intermediate $p_{\rm T}$ ($p_{\rm T} \lesssim 8$ GeV/$c$) exhibit a mass hierarchy when compared to pions and D mesons, while converging into a species-independent curve at higher $p_{\rm T}$. At low and intermediate $p_{\rm T}$, the results could be interpreted in terms of a later thermalization of charm quarks compared to light quarks, while at high $p_{\rm T}$, path-length dependent effects seem to dominate. The J/$\psi$ $v_2$ measurements are further compared to a microscopic transport model calculation. Using a simplified extension of the quark scaling approach involving both light and charm quark flow components, it is shown that the D-meson $v_{\rm n}$ measurements can be described based on those for charged pions and J/$\psi$ flow.
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