The secret lives of Long­-Lived Particles at the Large Hadron Collider

Matthias Danninger, SFU Physics
Location: AQ 3149

Friday, 05 April 2024 02:30PM PDT


For the last few decades, High Energy Physics has been a victim of its own early success. Despite numerous theoretical arguments why it cannot be the final explanation for the interactions of fundamental particles, the Standard Model of particle physics continues to withstand intense scrutiny of the most determined experimental physicists. One promising way to search for signs of new physics is at the Large Hadron Collider, probing energies comparable to those present very shortly after the Big Bang.

In the past, we often assumed that new particles produced in particle collisions would decay immediately. But what if new particles had long lifetimes and traveled centimetres — even kilometres — before transforming into something we could detect? Muons, for instance, can travel several kilometres before decaying.

In this talk, I will discuss the challenges and strategies we use in searches for signs of long-lived new particle signatures in the ATLAS experiment. I will highlight what we have achieved experimentally thus far and why we still can be excited for more data in the future.