May 13, 2016

Catching The 750 GeV Boson With Roman Pots?!

Posted by in category: particle physics

I am told by a TOTEM manager that this is public news and so it can be blogged about — so here I would like to explain a rather cunning plan that the TOTEM and the CMS collaborations have put together to enhance the possibilities of a discovery, and a better characterization, of the particle that everybody hopes is real, the 750 GeV resonance seen in photon pairs data by ATLAS and CMS in their 2015 data.

What is TOTEM, first of all? Well, TOTEM is a collaboration that operates some high-rapidity detectors located around the CMS collision point at the LHC. And before you ask, rapidity is a measurement of how close to the beam a particle is emitted by a collision. Particles emitted orthogonally have rapidity equal to zero; particles traveling at angles increasingly close to the z axis (which we take to be the beam axis at the collision point) have higher positive or negative rapidity (the sign depends on the verse, and is determined by convention). Below is a schematic of the detector.

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