We present preliminary results  from exploring the phase diagram of finite temperature QCD with three degenerate flavors and with two light flavors and the mass of the third held approximately at the strange quark mass. We use an order αs2a2, a4 Symanzik improved gauge action and an order αsa2, a4 improved staggered quark action. The improved staggered action leads to a dispersion relation with diminished lattice artifacts, and hence better thermodynamic properties. It decreases the flavor symmetry breaking of staggered quarks substantially, and we estimate that at the transition temperature for an Nt = 8 to Nt = 10 lattice all pions will be lighter than the lightest kaon. Preliminary results on lattices with Nt = 4, 6 and 8 are presented.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics