Welcome to the International Symposium on
"Forty Years of Quark-Gluon Plasma".
The early conceptions about possible new phases of nuclear matter under extremely hot/dense environment were formed in the mid to late 70's, shortly after the birth of Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD) itself. Over the past four decades or so, those early conceptions have turned into physical reality in laboratories. The high temperature phase of QCD, first named as quark-gluon plasma in a 1978 paper by Edward Shuryak, is now routinely created in nuclear collision experiments at RHIC and the LHC, with its many properties being measured. Unprecedented high performance computing has further enabled numerical investigations of QCD dynamics and thermodynamics with great precision. Developments of sophisticated effective models have provided many insights into the dense phases of QCD and facilitated interesting connections to astrophysical objects like neutron stars. The Beam Energy Scan program at RHIC and other intermediate/low energy nuclear collision programs worldwide are now (or will soon be) generating fresh empirical data on the baryonic-rich region of the QCD phase diagram, with hints of novel phenomena such as critical point, anomalous chiral effects and global polarization.
The purpose of this Symposium is to reflect on the past, to review the present status, as well as to discuss the future of QCD matter research and nuclear collision experiments. The Symposium also celebrates the outstanding scientific achievements of Prof. Edward Shuryak who turns 70th this year and who has made numerous significant contributions to the formation and development of this research field since its infancy.