High Energy Physics Research at CMS and D-Zero Collider Experiments
Avtandyl Kharchilava Principal Investigator
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The physics program at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, Geneva, Switzerland is in full operation, now delivering proton-proton collisions at 8 TeV collision energy. The SUNY at Buffalo group is a member of the CMS experiment which is currently in an intense data-taking phase for 2012, and which will segue into an analysis and upgrade phase during the period 2014-1015. While the Fermilab Tevatron has ceased operations, nevertheless significant data remains to be analyzed from the experiments. The SUNY at Buffalo group continues to play an important role in the analysis of data from the D0 experiment.<br/><br/>The proposed program concentrates on finding answers to fundamental questions about the Electroweak symmetry breaking and on searches for physics beyond the Standard Model (SM). One aspect of the research is to search directly for Higgs particles at the CMS and D0 experiments, and to search for evidence of new heavy vector bosons at CMS. Another aspect involves the study of SM processes such as the associated production of vector bosons with bottom and charm quarks which constitute backgrounds to Higgs boson searches in various decay channels. The discovery of the Higgs boson or a new heavy vector boson would be a major breakthrough in our understanding of fundamental properties of matter, while any deviation from the SM prediction could manifest presence of New Physics. <br/><br/>The SUNY at Buffalo group is also making important technical contributions to the CMS Experiment, particularly the operations and upgrade of the Forward Pixel Detector project. The proposed research program building upon the group's success and expertise in Forward Pixel Detector commissioning and operation, in jet calibration techniques at hadron colliders, and in software and physics analysis.<br/><br/>The broader impact of the proposal fosters collaboration between the SUNY Buffalo group members and high school teachers and their students through the group's QuarkNet Center and through Masterclasses. These open up possibilities for non-traditional participants to come in close contact with fundamental research at the energy frontier in science.