FEFU scientists won the RFBR competition

News, 16 April 2019

Scientists of the Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) won the competition “Mega-science NICA” held by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) to support research on the hadronic and quark-gluon matter.

It is planned to study the states of the dense quark-gluon plasma using supercomputer calculations and machine learning methods. Results will be included in the research programme of the NICA collider being constructed in Dubna. The unique project in the fields of theoretical physics is headed by Leader of the Centre of chiral biophotonics of the FEFU School of Biomedicine Alexander Molochkov.

According to Doctor of Physics and Mathematics Alexander Molochkov, modern science views quarks and gluons as fundamental and undivided constituents of the matter; that is why this topic is of special scientific interest.

Alexander Molochkov (on the right) and his research team. Photo © FEFU press-office

“It is supposed that in the first moments of the formation of the Universe, the matter was in the state of the quark-gluon plasma. One of the most interesting issues is how properties of the matter change with the change of the temperature and density, and under which conditions an ordinary hadron matter transfers into the quark-gluon plasma. The same interest is evoked by research on cold dense quark matter that may be found in high-density space objects, for example, neutron stars,” leader of the project reported.

Alexander Molochkov noted that the peculiarity of research is the simultaneous use of the quantum chromodynamics and machine learning (neural networks) methods. Scientists suppose that the neural network allows obtaining new information about the phase behavior of the dense quark-gluon matter basing on the simulation results.

“Study of the phase diagram of the quark-gluon matter is the topical issue of modern science. Nowadays, scientific teams from virtually all countries that conduct research in fundamental physics are engaged in it. In spite of high scientific rivalry, there is still a good chance that the first in the world results of research on the cold quark matter will be obtained at the Russian collider in Dubna with our participation,” Alexander Molochkov noted.

It is necessary to add that the study of properties of the quark-gluon plasma has been conducted in FEFU for more than ten years. A large team has been established which includes students, postgraduates and postdocs. In 2015, scientists won a successfully implemented project of the Russian Science Foundation “Research on the quark-gluon plasma by methods of the lattice quantum chromodynamics” headed by Prof. of the Osaka University (Japan) Atsushi Nakamura. The instrumentation that was worked out in the course of the project implementation would be used in the new research.

“Our colleagues Vitaly Bornyakov, Victor Braguta and Valentin Zakharov, with whom we have been cooperating for more than ten years and even jointly won the RSF grant in 2015, also obtained the support of three more grants of NICA-RFBR for further development of results obtained in this project. Thus, research of our international team was highly appreciated and gained support at this prestigious competition,” Alexander Molochkov added.

Press-office of FEFU