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Quark-gluon plasma. Computer-constructed subatomic particle tracks made during quark-gluon plasma research. Quarks are thought to be the fundamental building blocks of matter. A quark-gluon plasma, in which the particles are not bound together, has not existed since just after the formation of the universe in the Big Bang. It was created by colliding lead nuclei to densities 20 times that of nuclear matter and a temperature 100,000 times that at the Sun's centre. The plasma was detected by studying the particles which formed from its recombination. Study of such plasma will allow a greater understanding of the early universe. This work was done at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland.
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