Is This the Beginning of the End of the Standard Model?

Thoughts from a proper particle physicist on the recent announcement from the LHC…

Of Particular Significance

Was yesterday the day when a crack appeared in the Standard Model that will lead to its demise?  Maybe. It was a very interesting day, that’s for sure. [Here’s yesterday’s article on the results as they appeared.]

I find the following plot useful… it shows the results on photon pairs from ATLAS and CMS superposed for comparison.  [I take only the central events from CMS because the events that have a photon in the endcap don’t show much (there are excesses and deficits in the interesting region) and because it makes the plot too cluttered; suffice it to say that the endcap photons show nothing unusual.]  The challenge is that ATLAS uses a linear horizontal axis while CMS uses a logarithmic one, but in the interesting region of 600-800 GeV you can more or less line them up.  Notice that CMS’s bins are narrower than ATLAS’s by a factor…

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5 Responses to “Is This the Beginning of the End of the Standard Model?”

  1. BurntSynapse Says:

    Do any of these results point hypotheses toward redefining these particles as observational consequences of a process?

    This is cited by experts in history of science as marking particularly significant theoretical change, e.g.: heliocentrism & evolution.

  2. We shall see. How many similar phenomena of similar significance have gone away after much more data became available?

    I am now at the Texas Symposium in Geneva, where I gave a talk on Monday. (It is formally over but tomorrow there is an Einstein-related excursion to Bern. I have never been there before and am wondering if my understanding of German there will be on par with my understanding of French in Geneva. 🙂 ) During the coffee break on Tuesday, they showed the talks at CERN live. The wonders of technology!

  3. A question mark in the title tends to suggest that the answer will be ‘no’. The BICEP2 debacle shows the dangers of science by press release. Perhaps it is still better to wait for peer review before going public?

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