Long Range Rapidity Correlations and Jet Production in High Energy Nuclear Collisions

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The STAR Collaboration at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider presents a systematic study of high-transverse-momentum charged-di-hadron correlations at small azimuthal pair separation Delta phi in d+Au and central Au+Au collisions at s(NN)=200 GeV. Significant correlated yield for pairs with large longitudinal separation Delta eta is observed in central Au+Au collisions, in contrast to d+Au collisions. The associated yield distribution in Delta eta x Delta phi can be decomposed into a narrow jet-like peak at small angular separation which has a similar shape to that found in d+Au collisions, and a component that is narrow in Delta phi and depends only weakly on Delta eta, the "ridge." Using two systematically independent determinations of the background normalization and shape, finite ridge yield is found to persist for trigger p(t)>6 GeV/c, indicating that it is correlated with jet production. The transverse-momentum spectrum of hadrons comprising the ridge is found to be similar to that of bulk particle production in the measured range (2 < p(t)< 4 GeV/c).