CHRISTOPH M. E. PAUS, Professor of Physics

Professor of Physics

EMAIL: paus@mit.edu

PHONE: [MIT] (617) 258-0314 [Fermilab] (630) 840-4993

OFFICE: 24-423

ASSISTANT: Anna Maria Convertino (617) 253-2391


Area of Physics:

High Energy Physics

Research Interests

Since its inception about 100 years ago particle physics has made amazing progress in understanding what matter is and what forces act on it. Nevertheless, there are a number of fundamental and seemingly simple questions we do not yet know the answer to. My present research focuses on one of those fundamental question which is how particles acquire their mass. We know very well that particles have masses, but have not yet been able to show experimentally through which mechanism it happens. Therefore, we will need to find a missing particle, the Higgs boson, which we believe is responsible for the fact that all particles have mass. The quest for the Higgs boson is presently my main research objective.

In experimental particle physics we make use of Einstein’s fundamental observation that mass, m, and energy, E, can be converted into each other through a simple constant c2: E = mc2. This means the higher the energy in the particle collision the higher the mass of the particles we can produce. As a rule of thumb the particles we are looking for, like the Higgs boson, are of high mass and thus the higher the energy the more discovery potential the collision has. Another feature of particle collisions is that the higher the particle’s mass the rarer its production. Thus it is very important to have intense particle beams to increase the number of collisions we can produce and analyze in a given amount of time. For my research I am recording and analyzing data of high-energy proton-proton collisions at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Geneva, Switzerland. With the LHC the energy and intensity frontiers make a quantum leap forward with the collision energy increasing by a factor of seven while the intensity increases by two orders of magnitude with respect to the most powerful existing machine, the Tevatron at Fermilab. There is no certainty of what is going to happen, but I believe we are at the brink of something big as collisions at the LHC are about to open a door to truly uncharted territory.

Biographical Sketch

1985–87 Soldier at the German Bundeswehr
1987 Interrogation Officer in Polish language

Rheinisch Westfälische Technische Hochschule, Aachen (1987–96):
1989  Pre-Diploma Mechanical Engineering
1990  Pre-Diploma Physics
1990  Pre-Diploma Mathematics
1992  Diploma Mechanical Engineer
1996  Ph.D. Physics

Borchers Medal of Honor for Ph.D. Thesis

Research Positions
2004–present  Associate Professor of Physics, MIT
2000–present  Co-Convener of the B Reconstruction and Tagging Group at CDF
1999–present  Co-Leader of the Time-of-Flight Project at CDF
1998–present  Co-Leader of the Level3 PC Farm Project at CDF
1994–present  Member of the LEP Electroweak Working Group
1999–2004  Assistant Professor of Physics, MIT
1999–2000  Co-Convener of the Mixing and Lifetime Working Group at CDF
1997–98  Co-Convener of the LEP Fermion Pair Working Group
1997–98  CERN Fellow
1996–98  Member of the Scientific Publication Committee of the L3 Experiment
1996–98  Co-Convener of the Fermion Pair Production Analysis Group at L3 Experiment

Selected Publications

  • "Event Builder and Level 3 Trigger at the CDF Experiment," K.Anikeev et al., Comput. Phys. Commun.140:110-116, 2001.
  • "Design and Performance Tests of the CDF Time-of-Flight System," C.Paus et al., Nucl. Instrum. Meth. A 461:579-581, 2001.
  • "B Physics at the Tevatron: Run II and Beyond," K.Anikeev et al., hep-ph/0201071.
  • "A Combination of Preliminary Electroweak Measurements and Constraints on the Standard Model," ALEPH Collaboration and DELPHI Collaboration and L3 Collaboration and OPAL Collaboration and LEP Electroweak Working Group and SLD Heavy Flavor and Electroweak Groups, hep-ex/0112021.
  • "Determination of Gamma / Z Interference in e+ e- Annihilation at LEP," L3 Collaboration, M. Acciarri et al., Phys.Lett.B 489:93-101, 2000.
  • "Measurements of Cross-Sections and Forward Backward Asymmetries at the Z Resonance and Determination of Electroweak Parameters," L3 Collaboration, M. Acciarri et al., Eur.Phys.J.C 16:1-40, 2000.

Last updated on March 5, 2015 1:27 PM