Determination of bulk nuclear properties using central reactions of heavy nuclei is reviewed. Different observables need to be searched for testing different bulk properties. In particular, the stopping observables, such as limiting momentum transfer or anisotropy of particle rapidity distribution, are found to be correlated with nuclear viscosity. The systematics of the latter is now of interest in the context of claims of detecting the perfect liquid at RHIC. The momentum dependence of anisotropies of proton emission, associated with the reaction plane, is found to be correlated, in the transport simulations of central collisions, to the momentum dependence of nucleon optical potential at supranormal densities. Finally, transverse anisotropies of nuclear collective motion are found to be correlated with pressures reached in the participant zone. Measurements of those anisotropies allow then to constraint the nuclear equation of state.
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