Transverse mass spectra of protons emitted in Au + Au collisions at beam energies of 6, 8, and 10.8 GeV/ nucleon have been measured as a function of collision centrality over a rapidity range 0.5<ylab<1.5. The spectra are well reproduced by Boltzmann distributions over the measured transverse mass region, which allows for extrapolation of the data to derive the rapidity density and apparent temperature of the emitting source. The shapes of the rapidity distributions suggest significant transparency or substantial longitudinal expansion in even the most central collisions at all three beam energies. The data are analyzed within a simple thermal source plus longitudinal expansion model.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics