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The BEST framework for the search for the QCD critical point and the chiral magnetic effect

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The Beam Energy Scan Theory (BEST) Collaboration was formed with the goal of providing a theoretical framework for analyzing data from the Beam Energy Scan (BES) program at the relativistic heavy ion collider (RHIC) at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The physics goal of the BES program is the search for a conjectured QCD critical point as well as for manifestations of the chiral magnetic effect. We describe progress that has been made over the previous five years. This includes studies of the equation of state and equilibrium susceptibilities, the development of suitable initial state models, progress in constructing a hydrodynamic framework that includes fluctuations and anomalous transport effects, as well as the development of freezeout prescriptions and hadronic transport models. Finally, we address the challenge of integrating these components into a complete analysis framework. This document describes the collective effort of the BEST Collaboration and its collaborators around the world.

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