In very high-energy collisions nuclei are practically transparent to each other but produce very hot nearly baryon-free matter in the so-called central rapidity region. The energy in the central rapidity region comes from the kinetic energy of the colliding nuclei. We calculate the energy and rapidity loss of the nuclei using the color glass condensate model. This model also predicts the excitation energy of the nuclear fragments. Using a space-time picture of the collision we calculate the baryon and energy densities of the receding baryonic fireballs. For central collisions of gold nuclei at the highest energy attainable at the Relativistic Heavy-Ion Collider, for example, we find baryon densities more than ten times that of atomic nuclei over a large volume.
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This work was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy Grant No. DE-FG02-87ER40328.