Hydrodynamic radial and elliptic flow in heavy-ion collisions from AGS to LHC energies

Research paper by Gregory Kestin, Ulrich W Heinz

Indexed on: 28 Nov '08Published on: 28 Nov '08Published in: Nuclear Theory


Using ideal relativistic hydrodynamics in 2+1 dimensions, we study the collision energy dependence of radial and elliptic flow, of the emitted hadron spectra, and of the transverse momentum dependence of several hadronic particle ratios, covering the range from Alternating Gradient Synchrotron (AGS) to Large Hadron Collider (LHC) energies. These calculations establish an ideal fluid dynamic baseline that can be used to assess non-equilibrium features manifest in future LHC heavy-ion experiments. Contrary to earlier suggestions we find that a saturation and even decrease of the differential elliptic flow v_2(p_T) with increasing collision energy cannot be unambiguously associated with the QCD phase transition.