ATLAS Blog

Science and art collide at Ars Electronica

3rd September 2011 – Located in Linz, Austria, Ars Electronica is an exhibition centre and creative lab which “has been investigating the consequences of the Digital Revolution” since the late 1970’s. Ars Electronica holds a yearly festival that attracts thousands of people from Austria, Germany and the rest of the world. This year, the theme of the festival, which is happening in collaboration with CERN, is ‘Origin – how it all begins’.

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Philosophising physics

2nd September 2011 – Last Monday (August 22), within a tight 35-minute allocation, ATLAS’s Henri Bachacou presented the entirety of the results from ‘Beyond the Standard Model’ searches for BOTH the ATLAS and CMS experiments, to the Lepton Photon conference in Mumbai, India. This included results of studies on Supersymmetry, strong gravity, heavy resonances and long-lived particles, and was a staggering amount of information to convey in an extremely limited amount of time. Henri did a great job, firing through slides, and guiding the audience through the most up-to-date results from the wide range of exotic topics. He did have one thing on his side, however… from each search, from each physics topic and from each experiment, the results came back the same: Has the LHC seen anything beyond the standard model yet?  Nope.

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Higgs results from Lepton Photon

26th August 2011 – The Lepton Photon 2011 conference began on Monday in Mumbai, India. Over 400 physicists from all over the world (including me!) gathered to hear the latest results. One result in particular -- news on the search for the Higgs boson -- was foremost in people's minds, and rather than prolong the suspense further, the talks on the Higgs were scheduled right after the welcoming speeches.

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Top down: Reflections on a long and sleepless analysis journey

20th August 2011 – For the last months (which feel like years…) I’ve been working, within a small group of people, on the precision measurement of the top quark pair production cross section, and if you think that sounds complicated – the German word is “Top-Quark-Paarproduktionswechselwirkungsquerschnitt”.

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Frantic for femtobarns...

19th August 2011 – In particle physics, we describe the number of interesting particle collisions that we have in our data in terms of the "integrated luminosity", which is measured in units called inverse femtobarns. In the whole of 2010, the LHC delivered about 0.04 inverse femtobarns (about 3 million million collisions). Nowadays, it can deliver twice that in a single day!

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A look back at the EPS

30th July 2011 – I happened to run into Andrey Korytov after his eagerly awaited CMS Higgs talk. No, CMS had not yet seen the Higgs, and ATLAS could breathe a sigh of relief.

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A view inside the ATLAS Higgs combination

28th July 2011 – Well it's been a few days since the Higgs presentations at EPS, and I'm just recovering from the lack of sleep. It's ironic that I have a newborn daughter, and my sleep deprivation is due to work.

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Arrival at EPS

27th July 2011 – When I was invited to give a talk on behalf of ATLAS at this summer’s European Physical Society High Energy Physics conference (EPS), I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Most conferences I have been to are relatively intimate affairs where you have long discussions after every talk and then everybody trots down to the pub together to discuss the day’s results. EPS, though, is one of the largest particle physics conferences in the world. Or at least I reckon it is, having eyeballed the number of participants registered on the website, hailing from all sorts of fields ranging from astrophysics to ultra relativistic ions to our very own LHC proton-proton collider physics.

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Alchemy

7th November 2010 – Beneath our feet on this warm November night, we have realized the ancient dream of turning lead into gold.

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The inverse picobarn threshold has been crossed in ATLAS!

10th August 2010 – Another milestone has been passed in the long run of ATLAS toward new physics. On Monday August 9, 2010 ATLAS has recorded the first inverse picobarn (pb-1) of 7 TeV collisions. The trend is good and we recently reached the 0.1 pb-1 per day of integrated luminosity (meaning that we can now collect in ~10 days the amount of data we have collected over the last 4 months).

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