Thermalization via classical Yang-Mills

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Date/Time:Thursday, 24 Apr 2014 from 4:10 pm to 5:00 pm
Location:A401 Zaffarano Hall
Channel:Nuclear Physics
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Mark York, McGill University, Canada

The study of classical Yang-Mills theory is motivated by its connection to quantum Yang-Mills at high occupancy and weak coupling (e.g. the glasma) and the thermalization of such a non-equilibrium state. In fact, classical Yang-Mills has no equilibrium, but rather exhibits a self-similar cascade of energy into the ultraviolet; with statistically isotropic and homogeneous initial conditions, the occupancy has been observed (on the lattice) to evolve towards a scaling solution at late times. These solutions have also been observed to obey a power-law $f(p) sim 1/p^alpha$ at intermediate momenta; however, the lattice is inconclusive concerning the precise value of $alpha$. In this talk, I will review the kinetic theory description of classical Yang-Mills and show that it accurately reproduces the current lattice simulations and offers a fairly robust determination of $alpha = 1$. I will end by commenting on the significance of our findings with regard to certain models of an energy / particle-number cascade or the formation of a condensate.