Monday, July 29, 2013

1307.7086 (V. Balasubramanian et al.)

Inhomogeneous holographic thermalization    [PDF]

V. Balasubramanian, A. Bernamonti, J. de Boer, B. Craps, L. Franti, F. Galli, E. Keski-Vakkuri, B. Müller, A. Schäfer
The sudden injection of energy in a strongly coupled conformal field theory and its subsequent thermalization can be holographically modeled by a shell falling into anti-de Sitter space and forming a black brane. For a homogeneous shell, Bhattacharyya and Minwalla were able to study this process analytically using a weak field approximation. Motivated by event-by-event fluctuations in heavy ion collisions, we include inhomogeneities in this model, obtaining analytic results in a long wavelength expansion. In the early-time window in which our approximations can be trusted, the resulting evolution matches well with that of a simple free streaming model. Near the end of this time window, we find that the stress tensor approaches that of second-order viscous hydrodynamics. We comment on possible lessons for heavy ion phenomenology.
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