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Nuclear and Particle Physics Colloquia

Mondays ~ Refreshments 3:30pm Talk: 4:00pm ~ Kolker Room, 26-414

 

Committee:
William Detmold, Chair ~ Mike Williams ~ Lindley Winslow

 

Colloquia Archives

 

February 8, 2016

hosted by: Janet Conrad

Philip Coleman Harris, (CERN)

Colliding Into the Galaxy

Abstract: With an upgraded energy and calibrated detectors, the next few years are pivotal for new physics searches at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). Developments over the past year have demonstrated the power of the LHC to compliment and, in some cases, extend direct detection and galactic searches for dark matter. We present a new search for dark matter that represents the culmination of these developments, which is now the established archetype for dark matter searches in future LHC runs. In addition to an order of magnitude improvement in sensitivity, we demonstrate strong exclusion of the galactic center gamma ray excess, and stronger bounds relative to spin-dependent dark matter searches. The search incorporates new approaches in jet substructure as well as state of the art QCD calculations. In its wake, we have performed some of the most precise measurements of QCD to date. Finally, we explore the future of dark matter searches and ask the question: can we make a definitive path to dark matter discovery?

 

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



February 16, 2016



No Colloquium

Presidents' Day observed

 



February 22, 2016

hosted by:  Bolek Wyslouch



David Moore, (Stanford University)

Searching for the "Dark" Components of the Universe

Abstract: Astrophysical observations indicate that the vast majority of the energy density of the universe consists of dark matter and dark energy, whose fundamental nature is poorly understood. Understanding these “dark” components of the universe is a key goal of physics in the coming years, with significant implications for our understanding of cosmology and particle physics.

 

I will discuss the development of two technologies that can enable novel terrestrial searches for models of dark matter and dark energy. First, I will discuss the Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (SuperCDMS), which will search for Weakly Interacting Massive Particles (WIMPs) with masses below 10 GeV with unprecedented sensitivity. If WIMPs are detected by SuperCDMS, larger detectors will be needed to measure their detailed properties. I will describe the development of cryogenic calorimeters using Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors (MKIDs), which may provide an easier path to the large target masses needed in these next-generation searches.  Second, I will discuss the development of sub-attonewton force sensors based on optically levitated microspheres in vacuum. This technique can enable extremely sensitive searches for new forces at micron length scales, probing previously unexplored parameter space in models that could explain the nature of dark matter, dark energy, or the microscopic properties of gravity.  In both cases, I will describe recent results from existing experiments utilizing these techniques and prospects for next-generation searches for new physics.

 

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



February 29, 2016

hosted by: Richard Milner



Heather Gray, (CERN)

Chasing Beauty: Probing the Higgs using b-quarks

Abstract: In the Standard Model, the Higgs has the highest probability to decay to b-quarks, yet this is one of the most challenging channels to observe at the LHC. I will explain the importance of measuring the coupling to the Higgs b-quarks, outline the ATLAS Run-1 H->bb analysis and review the current status of our knowledge of the coupling of the Higgs to b-quarks. I will also discuss how we might expect to observe the coupling of the Higgs to b-quarks during Run-2 of the LHC. Finally, I will discuss potential measurements of the Higgs self-coupling with future colliders to further explore the mechanism of electroweak symmetry breaking.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



March 7, 2016


hosted by: Jesse Thaler



Prof. Lian-Tao Wang, (University of Chicago)

Physics Opportunities at Future Circular Colliders

Abstract: Following the discovery of the Higgs boson, there has been a lot discussion about the next step in high energy physics. Among different options, a couple of newly proposed next generation circular colliders, including FCC at CERN and CEPC/SPPC in China, have attracted a lot of attention. Through preliminary studies in the past couple of years, an exciting picture of their physics capabilities has emerged. In this talk, I will give an overview of this topic; focusing on some of the most important questions in high energy physics they can help addressing.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



March 14, 2016

hosted by:Jesse Thaler



Prof. Surjeet Rajendran, (UC Berkeley)

New Directions in Searching for the Dark Universe

Abstract: In this talk, we discuss ways to search for a wide variety of ultralight bosonic dark matter using precision instruments and probes of ultramassive dark matter using astrophysical probes such as exploding white dwarfs.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



March 21, 2016



No Colloquium

Spring Break



March 28, 2016

hosted by: Mike Williams



Prof. William Detmold, (MIT)

Nuclear Physics from the Ground Up

Abstract: Nuclear physics has entered a new era in which we are beginning to make direct contact between complex phenomena in light nuclei and the underlying Standard Model through lattice QCD calculations. In the last few years, the first QCD calculations of the structure of light nuclei have been performed, as have the first QCD calculations of the simplest nuclear reaction: n p → d γ. I will discuss this progress and the implications it has for our understanding of nuclear physics more broadly. I will also consider how having Standard Model control of nuclear matrix elements will enhance the reach of a variety of future experiments involving nuclear targets.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



April 4, 2016

hosted by: Lindley Winslow



Prof. Kimberly Palladino, (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Limiting WIMPS: Recent LUX Results

Abstract: Astrophysical evidence indicates that dark matter is five times more abundant that the normal matter that we interact with daily. A candidate for dark matter is the weakly interacting massive particle (WIMP) which we attempt to see via its rare interactions with a target material in the laboratory. Liquid xenon time projection chambers have proved a robust technology for rare event searches, and the LUX experiment at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, SD has updated its sensitivity to spin-independent and spin-dependent WIMP-nucleon interactions to have world-leading limits. LUX will not be the final word in dark matter searches, and a number of direct detection experiments will be turning on in the coming years that will cover significant WIMP mass ranges and interaction cross-sections.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



April 11, 2016

hosted by: Mike Williams



Dr. Corey Reed, (UC Irvine)

Searching for Neutrinos with the ARIANNA Radio Neutrino Telescope

Abstract: Detection of astrophysical neutrinos at the highest energies (1017 eV and above) requires the instrumentation of vast volumes of target material, due to the low flux and low cross section of such neutrinos. The ARIANNA detector, located on the Ross Ice Shelf of Antarctica, exploits the long attenuation length of radio waves in ice to construct a cost effective yet highly sensitive high energy neutrino telescope. The detection mechanism, based on the so-called Askaryan effect, will be described. Construction of the completed ARIANNA pilot array will be detailed and the performance of the detector will be presented. Recent observations of high energy cosmic rays by the ARIANNA pilot array provide a method to verify detector sensitivity and angular resolution. A search for neutrino candidates in the pilot array data indicates that the ARIANNA detection technique can reject backgrounds while efficiently preserving the signal expected from a large number of astrophysical neutrino flux models.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



April 18, 2016



No Colloquium

Patriots' Day observed



April 25, 2016

hosted by:Will Detmold



Dr. Vincenzo Cirigliano, (Los Alamos National Laboratory)

Electric Dipole Moments and New Physics

Abstract: Searches for the permanent Electric Dipole Moments (EDMs) of the neutron, neutral atoms and molecules provide deep probes of the breaking of CP symmetry in extensions of the Standard Model. In this talk, I will present theoretical challenges and recent progress in connecting EDMs to new sources of CP violation originating at very short distances that may be a key ingredient to explain the matter-antimatter asymmetry of the universe. After presenting the general framework, I will describe the physics reach and complementarity of EDM searches in probing models of new physics, as well as possible CP-violating couplings of the Higgs. Along the way, I will illustrate how current hadronic and nuclear uncertainties impact our ability to probe new physics through EDMs. As a byproduct, I will identify goals for lattice QCD and nuclear structure calculations that will allow us to take full advantage of the vibrant experimental program.

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



May 2, 2016

hosted by: Lindley Winslow



Dr. Jenni Kotila, (University of Jyvaskyla, Finland/Yale)

The Story of Double Beta Decay

Abstract: The two-neutrino double beta decay is the rarest confirmed nuclear weak process and the first direct laboratory detection was only achieved as recently as 1987. Even rarer alternative for this process is the neutrinoless double beta decay, which can only take place if the neutrino is a massive Majorana particle, i.e. its own antiparticle, and if detected would revolutionize our understanding of physics. In this talk I will review the history and theory of double beta decay and present recent results in the calculation of phase space factors and nuclear matrix elements in different decay modes. Predictions for half-lives and limits for average neutrino mass are made, as well. I will also discuss some possible additional scenarios, such as the existence of sterile neutrinos.

 

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)



May 9, 2016

hosted by: William Detmold



Prof. Zein-Eddine Meziani, (Temple University)

Quarks and Color Forces with a Spin

Abstract: Over the past 50 years, a wealth of information critical to our understanding of subatomic matter was obtained by probing the electromagnetic and spin structure of the nucleon through lepton (electron) scattering. The first direct observation that protons are not elementary objects and the discovery that their constituents, dubbed "partons", are point-like particles made use of elastic and deep-inelastic (DIS) scattering of electrons off protons, respectively. With the advent of quantum chromodynamics (QCD), the modern theory of strong interactions partons were identified as quarks and gluons and an intensive theoretical effort is still underway to grasp the full consequences of this theory. More recently scattering experiments at Jefferson Lab using a 6 GeV polarized electron beam and polarized targets at high luminosity have allowed us to delve deeper into the nucleon structure with surprises and puzzles. These studies in the valence quark region are helping unravel the rich but elusive structure of the building blocks of matter as well as impacting our understanding of the non perturbative aspects of QCD. Recent measurements of the color electric and magnetic forces acting on quarks will be presented. A promising future is awaiting for us with the 12 GeV upgrade of Jefferson Lab and a possible future Electron Ion Collider in the quest to complete our picture of nucleon structure and our full grasp of QCD.

 

time:    4:00 p.m.
place:   Kolker Room (26-414)

(refreshments at 3:30 p.m.)