This series consists of talks in the areas of Particle Physics, High Energy Physics & Quantum Field Theory.
It has been known for a long time that quadratic gravity, which generalizes Einstein gravity with quadratic curvature terms, is renormalizable and asymptotically free in the UV. However the theory is afflicted with a ghost problem if the perturbative spectrum is taken seriously. We explore the possibility that the dimensional scale of Einstein-Hilbert term is far smaller than the scale where the dimensionless gravitational couplings become strong. The propagation of the gravitational degrees of freedom can change character at this strong interaction scale.
Quantum superpositions of matter are unusually sensitive to decoherence by tiny momentum transfers, in a way that can be made precise with a new diffusion standard quantum limit. Upcoming matter interferometers will produce unprecedented spatial superpositions of over a million nucleons. What sorts of dark matter scattering events could be seen in these experiments as anomalous decoherence? We show that it is extremely weak but medium range interaction between matter and dark matter that would be most visible, such as scattering through a Yukawa potential.
The search for physics beyond the Standard Model at the LHC is largely oriented towards new particles associated with solutions to the electroweak hierarchy problem. While the precise character of these partner states may vary from model to model, they typically possess large QCD production rates favorable for detection at hadron colliders. Null results in searches for partner particles during Run 1 of the LHC have placed the idea of electroweak naturalness under increasing strain.
I will first analytically show a simple, yet subtle "invariance" of two-body decay kinematics for the case of a massless daughter and a mother particle which is unpolarized and has a *generic* boost distribution in the laboratory frame. Namely, the laboratory frame energy distribution of the massless decay product has a peak, whose location is identical to the (fixed) energy of that particle in the rest frame of the corresponding mother particle. In turn, this value of the energy is a simple function of the other masses involved in the decay.
I will discuss the appeal of pseudo-Goldstone bosons (pGBs) for the generation of scales in Early Universe cosmology. In particular, I will demonstrate how in Goldstone Inflation a pGB inflaton can solve the hierarchy problem of inflation (the tension between the Lyth bound and the inflationary scale as preferred by CMB anisotropies), while avoiding the problems with trans-Planckian scales that are typically associated with related models. A simple model based on the coset SU(4)/Sp(4) realises both the Higgs doublet and an inflaton singlet as Goldstone modes.
The continued lack of definitive signals at direct detection experiments places many models of weakly interacting dark matter into tension. Direct detection is naturally suppressed in models where the dark matter co-annihilates with another particle in the early universe. The cosmology, direct detection, and LHC signals of such models can often be well understood by considering only the most relevant low-energy degrees of freedom. We draw lessons for the Minimal Supersymmetric Standard Model.
A new analysis of electron-proton scattering data (those published in 2010 by the Mainz A1 collaboration and previous world compilations) to determine the proton electric and magnetic radii is presented. The analysis enforces model-independent constraints of form factor analyticity and investigates a wide range of possible systematic effects.
Extensions of the Standard Model (SM) Higgs sector often predict the existence of new vacua and can feature novel patterns of symmetry breaking in the early universe. In this talk, I will discuss the implications of such scenarios for electroweak scale cosmology, baryogenesis, and Higgs phenomenology. I will focus on two classes of models, one involving a gauge singlet scalar field and the other an inert SU(2) doublet scalar.
Identifying the nature of dark matter is one of the most challenging problems in physics. There is a general consensus that dark matter is a weakly interacting particle and predominantly cold, yet the Cold Dark Matter (CDM) hypothesis remains to be verified. I will show that next cosmological surveys could play a leading role in understanding the dark matter microphysics.
In this talk I’ll discuss some of the recent developments in precision physics which will be useful for extracting the best physics results we can from LHC run II. I’ll mostly focus on a specific example regarding anomalous interactions of the Higgs boson.