ALICE mission

The ALICE Collaboration has built a detector optimized to study the collisions of nuclei at the ultra-relativistic energies provided by the LHC. The aim is to study the physics of strongly interacting matter at the highest energy densities reached so far in the laboratory. In such conditions, 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, before quarks and gluons were bound together to form protons and neutrons. Recreating this primordial state of matter in the laboratory and understanding how it evolves will allow us to shed light on questions about how matter is organized and the mechanisms that confine quarks and gluons. For this purpose, we are carrying out a comprehensive study of the hadrons, electrons, muons, and photons produced in the collisions of heavy nuclei (208Pb). ALICE is also studying proton-proton and proton-nucleus collisions both as a comparison with nucleus-nucleus collisions and in their own right. In 2021 ALICE is completing a significant upgrade of its detectors to further enhance its capabilities and continue its scientific journey at the LHC for many years to come.

Recent highlights


Recent highlights

The ALICE Collaboration participates in EPS-HEP2021 with 1 plenary, 27 parallel and 7 poster presenters.
Declustering D$^{0}$-meson tagged jets in pp collisions allows for the dynamic reconstruction of gluon emissions in the charm-quark shower, exposing the suppressed emission phase-space known as the dead-cone: arXiv.
The ALICE Collaboration presents several new physics results at the 9th Large Hadron Collider Physics conference LHPC2021 this week (, as well as the ongoing major detector upgrade for the LHC Run 3, prospects for further upgrades for Run 4, and for a completely new heavy-ion detector for Run 5 and beyond.

Latest ALICE Submissions

Measurement of the groomed jet radius and momentum splitting fraction in pp and Pb$-$Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}} = 5.02$ TeVThis article presents groomed jet substructure measurements in pp and Pb$-$Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}} = 5.02$ TeV with the ALICE detector. The Soft Drop grooming algorithm provides access to the hard parton splittings inside a jet by removing soft wide-angle radiation. We report the groomed jet momentum splitting fraction, $z_{\rm g}$, and the (scaled) groomed jet radius, $\theta_{\rm g}$. Charged-particle jets are reconstructed at midrapidity using the anti-kT algorithm with resolution parameters $R = 0.2$ and $R = 0.4$. In heavy-ion collisions, the large underlying event poses a challenge for the reconstruction of groomed jet observables, since fluctuations in the background can cause groomed parton splittings to be misidentified. By using strong grooming conditions to reduce this background, we report these observables fully corrected for detector effects and background fluctuations for the first time. A narrowing of the $\theta_{\rm g}$ distribution in Pb$-$Pb collisions compared to pp collisions is seen, which provides direct evidence of the modification of the angular structure of jets in the quark$-$gluon plasma. No significant modification of the $z_{\rm g}$ distribution in Pb$-$Pb collisions compared to pp collisions is observed. These results are compared with a variety of theoretical models of jet quenching, and provide constraints on jet energy-loss mechanisms and coherence effects in the quark$-$gluon plasma.
K$^{0}_{\rm S}$- and (anti-)$Λ$-hadron correlations in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s} = 13$ TeVTwo-particle azimuthal correlations are measured with the ALICE apparatus in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s} = 13$ TeV to explore strangeness- and multiplicity-related effects in the fragmentation of jets and the transition regime between bulk and hard production, probed with the condition that a strange meson (K$^{0}_{\rm S}$) or a baryon ($\Lambda$) with transverse momentum $p_{\rm T} > 3$ GeV/c is produced. Azimuthal correlations between kaons or $\Lambda$ hyperons with other hadrons are presented at midrapidity for a broad range of the trigger ($3 < ~ p_{\rm T}^{\rm trigg} < ~ 20$ GeV/$c$) and associated particle $p_{\rm T}$ (1 GeV/$c$ $ < ~ p_{\rm T}^{\rm assoc} < ~ p_{\rm T}^{\rm trigg}$), for minimum-bias events and as a function of the event multiplicity. The near- and away-side peak yields are compared for the case of either K$^{0}_{\rm S}$ or $\Lambda$($\overline{\Lambda}$) being the trigger particle with that of inclusive hadrons (a sample dominated by pions). In addition, the measurements are compared with predictions from PYTHIA 8 and EPOS LHC event generators.
Anisotropic flow of identified hadrons in Xe-Xe collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.44TeVMeasurements of elliptic ($v_2$) and triangular ($v_3$) flow coefficients of $\pi^{\pm}$, K$^{\pm}$, p+$\rm \overline{p}$, K$^0_{\rm S}$, and $\Lambda + \overline{\Lambda}$ obtained with the scalar product method in Xe-Xe collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.44 TeV are presented. The results are obtained in the rapidity range $\left | y \right | < ~0.5$ and reported as a function of transverse momentum, $p_{\rm T}$, for several collision centrality classes. The flow coefficients exhibit a particle mass dependence for $p_{\rm T} < ~3$ GeV/$c$, while a grouping according to particle type (i.e., meson and baryon) is found at intermediate transverse momenta (3 < ~ $p_{\rm T}$ < ~8 GeV/$c$). The magnitude of the baryon $v_{2}$ is larger than that of mesons up to $p_{\rm T}$ = 6 GeV/$c$. The centrality dependence of the shape evolution of the $p_{\rm T}$-differential $v_2$ is studied for the various hadron species. The $v_2$ coefficients of $\pi^{\pm}$, K$^{\pm}$, and p+$\rm \overline{p}$ are reproduced by MUSIC hydrodynamic calculations coupled to a hadronic cascade model (UrQMD) for $p_{\rm T} < ~1$ GeV/$c$. A comparison with $v_{\rm n}$ measurements in the corresponding centrality intervals in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.02 TeV yields an enhanced $v_2$ in central collisions and diminished value in semicentral collisions.
Measurements of the groomed and ungroomed jet angularities in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s} = 5.02$ TeVThe jet angularities are a class of jet substructure observables which characterize the angular and momentum distribution of particles within jets. These observables are sensitive to momentum scales ranging from perturbative hard scatterings to nonperturbative fragmentation into final-state hadrons. We report measurements of several infrared- and collinear-safe jet angularities in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s} = 5.02$ TeV with the ALICE detector. Jets are reconstructed using charged particle tracks at midrapidity. The anti-$k_{\rm T}$ algorithm is used with jet resolution parameters $R = 0.2$ and $R = 0.4$ for several transverse momentum $p_{\rm T}^{\text{ch jet}}$ intervals in the 20$-$100 GeV/$c$ range. Using the jet grooming algorithm Soft Drop, the sensitivity to softer, wide-angle processes, as well as the underlying event, can be reduced in a way which is well-controlled in theoretical calculations. We report the ungroomed jet angularities, $\lambda_{\alpha}$, and groomed jet angularities, $\lambda_{\alpha\text{ , g}}$, to investigate the interplay between perturbative and nonperturbative effects at low jet momenta. Various angular exponent parameters $\alpha = 1$, 1.5, 2, and 3 are used to systematically vary the sensitivity of the observable to collinear and soft radiation. Results are compared to analytical predictions at next-to-leading-logarithmic accuracy, which provide a generally good description of the data in the perturbative regime but exhibit discrepancies in the nonperturbative regime. Moreover, these measurements serve as a baseline for future ones in heavy-ion collisions by providing new insight into the interplay between perturbative and nonperturbative effects in the angular and momentum substructure of jets. They supply crucial guidance on the selection of jet resolution parameter, jet transverse momentum and angular scaling variable for jet quenching studies.
Polarization of $Λ$ and $\overlineΛ$ hyperons along the beam direction in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.02 TeVThe polarization of the $\Lambda$ and $\overline\Lambda$ hyperons along the beam ($z$) direction, $P_{\rm z}$, has been measured in Pb-Pb collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 5.02TeV recorded with ALICE at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The largest contribution to $P_{\rm z}$ comes from elliptic flow induced vorticity and can be characterized by the second Fourier sine coefficient $P_{\rm z,s2} = \langle P_{\rm z} \sin(2\varphi - 2 \Psi_{\rm 2}) \rangle$, where $\varphi$ is the hyperon azimuthal emission angle, and $\Psi_{\rm 2}$ is the elliptic flow plane angle. We report the measurement of $P_{\rm z,\,{\rm s2}}$ for different collision centralities, and in the 30-50% centrality interval as a function of the hyperon transverse momentum and rapidity. The $P_{\rm z,\,{\rm s2}}$ is positive similarly as measured by the STAR Collaboration in Au-Au collisions at $\sqrt{s_{\rm NN}}$ = 200 GeV, with somewhat smaller amplitude in the semi-central collisions. This is the first experimental evidence of a non-zero hyperon $P_{\rm z}$ in Pb-Pb collisions at the LHC. The comparison of the measured $P_{\rm z,\,{\rm s2}}$ with the hydrodynamic model calculations shows sensitivity to the competing contributions from thermal and the recently found shear induced vorticity, as well as to whether the polarization is acquired at the quark-gluon plasma or the hadronic phase.
See all submissions...

Upcoming Conferences (Next Week)

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.


News of cards

The ALICE Collaboration participates in EPS-HEP2021 with 1 plenary, 27 parallel and 7 poster presenters.

The two barrels of the largest pixel detector ever built have been successfully lowered into the cavern and stand ready for commissioning.

The new ITS Outer Barrel was installed in March 2021.

The new Muon Forward Tracker, one of ALICE’s main sub-detectors, was installed in the cavern in December 2020.

The upgraded ALICE Miniframe was reinstalled in the experimental cavern in November