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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Critical point fluctuations: Finite size and global charge conservation effects

  • Author(s): Poberezhnyuk, RV
  • Savchuk, O
  • Gorenstein, MI
  • Vovchenko, V
  • Taradiy, K
  • Begun, VV
  • Satarov, L
  • Steinheimer, J
  • Stoecker, H
  • et al.

We investigate simultaneous effects of finite system size and global charge conservation on thermal fluctuations in the vicinity of a critical point. For that we consider a finite interacting system, which exchanges particles with a finite reservoir (thermostat), comprising a statistical ensemble that is distinct from the common canonical and grand canonical ensembles. As a particular example the van der Waals model is used. The global charge conservation effects strongly influence the cumulants of particle number distribution when the system size is comparable to that of the reservoir. If the system size is large enough to capture all the physics associated with the interactions, the global charge conservation effects can be accurately described and corrected for analytically, within a recently developed subensemble acceptance method. The finite size effects start to play a significant role when the correlation length grows large due to proximity of the critical point or when the system is small enough to be comparable to an eigenvolume of an individual particle. We discuss our results in the context of fluctuation measurements in heavy-ion collisions.

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