by Helen Caines. Published: 20 July 2013

The summer conference season kicks off for ALICE this year with Strangeness in Quark Matter 2013 (SQM2013) and EPSHEP 2013. The 14th edition of the SQM conference series will be held July 22-27 at Birmingham University, UK, while EPSHEP, held biannually since 1971, is in Stockholm, Sweden, July 18-24. There is a significant ALICE presence at both conferences with 36 contributed talks and 6 plenary presentations by the collaboration.

ALICE is highlighting numerous p-Pb results stemming from the three week 5.02 TeV run at the start of 2013. New results on nuclear modification factors, RAA, will be presented for a variety of hadronic species (D, J/psi, Y) and jets. These minimum-bias data indicate no strong deviations from binary collision scaled expectations, this demonstrates that the striking suppressions from binary scaling observed for all coloured objects so far in Pb-Pb collisions are a specific feature of partonic (quark and/or gluon) energy loss via interactions with the Quark Gluon Plasma (QGP). While the p-Pb run was initially requested to provide control dataset, several unexpected, and currently unexplained, novel results will be announced. In particular, that the identified particle spectra and correlations in the high multiplicity p-Pb events reveal signals suggestive of collective flow effects similar to those observed in heavy-ion collisions. Studies are on-going to determine the true origin of these intriguing phenomena.

New data on both soft and hard probes of the Pb-Pb collisions will also be presented. Higher precision RAA and elliptic flow results, including heavy quark measurements, as a function of the event centrality give the most detailed picture to date of partonic interactions with the QGP. Interestingly many of these new Pb-Pb results underscore the significance of a hadronic re-scattering phase at the LHC at the end of medium’s evolution. This phase was not previously considered important when predicting signatures of the QGP but must now be accounted for if we are to accurately model the full dynamics of a heavy-ion collision at the LHC.