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

Inclusive J/ψ production cross section measured at midrapidity for pp collisions compared to model calculations (left), and the beauty cross section at midrapidty as a function of c.m. energy (right panel).
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.

Latest ALICE Submissions

Prompt and non-prompt J/$ψ$ production cross sections at midrapidity in proton-proton collisions at $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02 and 13 TeVThe production of J/$\psi$ is measured at midrapidity ($|y| < ~0.9$) in proton-proton collisions at $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02 and 13 TeV, through the dielectron decay channel, using the ALICE detector at the Large Hadron Collider. The data sets used for the analyses correspond to integrated luminosities of $\mathcal{L}_{\rm int}$ = 19.4 $\pm$ 0.4 nb$^{-1}$ and $\mathcal{L}_{\rm int}$ = 32.2 $\pm$ 0.5 nb$^{-1}$ at $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02 and 13 TeV, respectively. The fraction of non-prompt J/$\psi$ mesons, i.e. those originating from the decay of beauty hadrons, is measured down to a transverse momentum $p_{\rm T}$ = 2 GeV/$c$ (1 GeV/$c$) at $\sqrt{s}$ = 5.02 TeV (13 TeV). The $p_{\rm T}$ and rapidity ($y$) differential cross sections, as well as the corresponding values integrated over $p_{\rm T}$ and $y$, are carried out separately for prompt and non-prompt J/$\psi$ mesons. The results are compared with measurements from other experiments and theoretical calculations based on quantum chromodynamics (QCD). The shape of the $p_{\rm T}$ and $y$ distributions of beauty quarks predicted by state-of-the-art perturbative QCD models are used to extrapolate the $\rm b\overline{b}$ pair cross section at midrapidity and in the total phase space. The total $\rm b\overline{b}$ cross sections are found to be $\sigma_{\rm b \overline{\rm b}} = 502 \pm 16 (\rm stat.) \pm 51 (\rm syst.)_{-3}^{+2} (extr.)~{\rm \mu b}$ and $\sigma_{\rm b \overline{\rm b}} = 218 \pm 37 (\rm stat.) \pm 32 (\rm syst.)_{-9.1}^{+8.2} (\rm extr.) {\rm \mu b}$ at $\sqrt{s}$ = 13 and 5.02 TeV, respectively. The value at $\sqrt{s}$ = 13 TeV is obtained from the combination of ALICE and LHCb measurements.
Inclusive J/$ψ$ production at midrapidity in pp collisions at $\sqrt{s}~=~13$ TeVWe report on the inclusive J/$\psi$ production cross section measured at the CERN Large Hadron Collider in proton-proton collisions at a centre-of-mass energy $\sqrt{s}~=~13$ TeV. The J/$\psi$ mesons are reconstructed in the $\rm e^{+} e^{-}$ decay channel and the measurements are performed at midrapidity ($|y| < ~0.9$) in the transverse-momentum interval $0 < ~ p_{\rm T} < ~40$ GeV/$c$, using a minimum bias data sample corresponding to an integrated luminosity $L_{\text{int}} = 32.2~\text{nb}^{-1}$ and an Electromagnetic Calorimeter triggered data sample with $L_{\text{int}} = 8.3~\mathrm{pb}^{-1}$. The $p_{\rm T}$-integrated J/$\psi$ production cross section at midrapidity, computed using the minimum bias data sample, is $\text{d}\sigma/\text{d}y|_{y=0} = 8.97\pm0.24~(\text{stat})\pm0.48~(\text{syst})\pm0.15~(\text{lumi})~\mu\text{b}$. An approximate logarithmic dependence with the collision energy is suggested by these results and available world data, in agreement with model predictions. The integrated and $p_{\rm T}$-differential measurements are compared with measurements in pp collisions at lower energies and with several recent phenomenological calculations based on the non-relativistic QCD and Color Evaporation models.
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.
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.
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.
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 Fast Interaction Trigger is the final piece of the puzzle of ALICE’s LS2 sub-detector installations.

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