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Recent progress in the understanding of the high density phase of neutron stars advances the view that a substantial fraction of the matter consists of hyperons. The possible impacts of a highly attractive interaction between hyperons on the properties of compact stars are investigated. We find that a hadronic equation of state with hyperons allows for a first order phase transition to hyperonic matter. The corresponding hyperon stars can have rather small radii of R ~ 8 km. PACS: 26.60+c, 21.65+f, 97.60.Gb, 97.60.Jd

Recent progress in the understanding of the high density phase of neutron stars advances the view that a substantial fraction of the matter consists of hyperons. The possible impacts of a highly attractive interaction between hyperons on the properties of compact stars is investigated. We find that the equation of state exhibits a second stable minimum at large hyperon contents which is in accord with existing hypernuclear data. This second solution gives rise to new effects for neutron star properties which are similar to the ones proposed for the deconfinement transition to strange quark matter and absolutely stable strange stars. We find that the corresponding hyperstars can have rather small radii of R=6-8 km independent of the mass. PACS: 26.60+c, 21.65+f, 97.60.Gb, 97.60.Jd

We study the implications on compact star properties of a soft nuclear equation of state determined from kaon production at subthreshold energies in heavy-ion collisions. On one hand, we apply these results to study radii and moments of inertia of light neutron stars. Heavy-ion data provides constraints on nuclear matter at densities relevant for those stars and, in particular, to the density dependence of the symmetry energy of nuclear matter. On the other hand, we derive a limit for the highest allowed neutron star mass of three solar masses. For that purpouse, we use the information on the nucleon potential obtained from the analysis of the heavy-ion data combined with causality on the nuclear equation of state.

The possible role of a first order QCD phase transition at nonvanishing quark chemical potential and temperature for cold neutron stars and for supernovae is delineated. For cold neutron stars, we use the NJL model with nonvanishing color superconducting pairing gaps, which describes the phase transition to the 2SC and the CFL quark matter phases at high baryon densities. We demonstrate that these two phase transitions can both be present in the core of neutron stars and that they lead to the appearance of a third family of solution for compact stars. In particular, a core of CFL quark matter can be present in stable compact star configurations when slightly adjusting the vacuum pressure to the onset of the chiral phase transition from the hadronic model to the NJL model. We show that a strong first order phase transition can have strong impact on the dynamics of core collapse supernovae. If the QCD phase transition sets in shortly after the first bounce, a second outgoing shock wave can be generated which leads to an explosion. The presence of the QCD phase transition can be read off from the neutrino and antineutrino signal of the supernova.

The modern phase diagram of strongly interacting matter reveals a rich structure at high-densities
due to phase transitions related to the chiral symmetry of quantum chromodynamics (QCD) and
the phenomenon of color superconductivity. These exotic phases have a significant impact on
high-density astrophysics, such as the properties of neutron stars, and the evolution of astrophysical systems as proto-neutron stars, core-collapse supernovae and neutron star mergers. Most recent pulsar mass measurements and constraints on neutron star radii are critically discussed.
Astrophysical signals for exotic matter and phase transitions in high-density matter proposed recently in the literature are outlined. A strong first order phase transition leads to the emergence of a third family of compact stars besides white dwarfs and neutron stars. The different microphysics of quark matter results in an enhanced r-mode stability window for rotating compact stars compared to normal neutron stars. Future telescope and satellite data will be used to extract signals from phase transitions in dense matter in the heavens and will reveal properties of the phases of dense QCD. Spectral line profiles out of x-ray bursts will determine the mass-radius ratio of compact stars. Gravitational wave patterns from collapsing neutron stars or neutron star mergers will even be able to constrain the stiffness of the quark matter equation of state. Future astrophysical data can therefore provide a crucial cross-check to the exploration of the QCD phase diagram with the heavy-ion program of the CBM detector at the FAIR facility.

Abstract: The medium modification of kaon and antikaon masses, compatible with low energy KN scattering data, are studied in a chiral SU(3) model. The mutual interactions with baryons in hot hadronic matter and the e ects from the baryonic Dirac sea on the K( ¯K ) masses are examined. The in-medium masses from the chiral SU(3) e ective model are compared to those from chiral perturbation theory. Furthermore, the influence of these in-medium e ects on kaon rapidity distributions and transverse energy spectra as well as the K, ¯K flow pattern in heavy-ion collision experiments at 1.5 to 2 A·GeV are investigated within the HSD transport approach. Detailed predictions on the transverse momentum and rapidity dependence of directed flow v1 and the elliptic flow v2 are provided for Ni+Ni at 1.93 A·GeV within the various models, that can be used to determine the in-medium K± properties from the experimental side in the near future.

Recent progress in the understanding of the high density phase of neutron stars advances the view that a substantial fraction of the matter consists of hyperons. The possible impacts of a highly attractive interaction between hyperons on the properties of compact stars are investigated.We find that a hadronic equation of state with hyperons allows for a first order phase transition to hyperonic matter. The corresponding hyperon stars can have rather small radii of R 8 km.

The measured particle ratios in central heavy-ion collisions at RHIC-BNL are investigated within a chemical and thermal equilibrium chiral SU(3) theta - omega approach. The commonly adopted noninteracting gas calculations yield temperatures close to or above the critical temperature for the chiral phase transition, but without taking into account any interactions. Contrary, the chiral SU(3) model predicts temperature and density dependent e ective hadron masses and e ective chemical potentials in the medium and a transition to a chirally restored phase at high temperatures or chemical potentials. Three di erent parametrizations of the model, which show di erent types of phase transition behaviour, are investigated. We show that if a chiral phase transition occured in those collisions, freezing of the relative hadron abundances in the symmetric phase is excluded by the data. Therefore, either very rapid chemical equilibration must occur in the broken phase, or the measured hadron ratios are the outcome of the dynamical symmetry breaking. Furthermore, the extracted chemical freeze-out parameters di er considerably from those obtained in simple noninteracting gas calculations. In particular, the three models yield up to 35 MeV lower temperatures than the free gas approximation. The in-medium masses turn out di er up to 150 MeV from their vacuum values.

We evaluate the in-medium D and -meson masses in hot hadronic matter induced by interactions with the light hadron sector described in a chiral SU(3) model. The e ective Lagrangian approach is generalized to SU(4) to include charmed mesons. We find that the D-mass drops substantially at finite temperatures and densities, which open the channels of the decay of the charmonium states ( 2, c, J/ ) to D pairs in the thermal medium. The e ects of vacuum polarisations from the baryon sector on the medium modification of the D-meson mass relative to those obtained in the mean field approximation are investigated. The results of the present work are compared to calculations based on the QCD sum-rule approach, the quark-meson coupling model, chiral perturbation theory, as well as to studies of quarkonium dissociation using heavy quark potential from lattice QCD.