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Tommaso Dorigo is an experimental particle physicist, who works for the INFN at the University of Padova, and collaborates with the CMS experiment at the CERN LHC. He coordinates the European network... Read More »



Jul 16 2011 | 9 comment(s)

In the beautiful hideout of Falassarna, Crete (see below), I am blogging today from the terrace of my hotel room, overlooking a wonderful beach. Although still "connected" and in touch with the happenings at CERN and Fermilab, I am for once in a detached, pensive mood, as I ponder over the status of HEP in this hot summer of 2011. So let me just assemble some thoughts below. Summer conferences are at our doors, but I will miss them.... I prefer to think at what we'll see at the next winter conferences!
I was waiting for the announcement in the Fermilab seminar of next Friday, but apparently despite I am still a member I am not well enough informed of what happens inside CDF, the experiment at the Tevatron proton-antiproton collider of Fermilab. So the paper is now public, and you can read the news in the Cornell arxiv: CDF sees an excess of muon pairs which is compatible with originating from the decay of B_s mesons.
While other sources (voluntarily not linked here, to avoid pissing off my collaborators) choose to be "on the news" these days, with a brand new exclusion plot of the Higgs boson obtained using almost one full inverse femtobarn of collisions which is not yet public but was made accessible by mistake on a Fermilab site, I will meekly point you out today to another result, which is by all means public and freely reproducible here (no reproach to Phil intended here -he acted in good faith and the fault is not his).
This instance of my "guess the plot" contest will be hopefully raising fewer controversies than the former one. You are asked to explain what the figure represents, possibly guessing the units on the x and y axes.

More advanced readers may know at a glance what this plot is and where it comes from. To them, I ask the favour to wait one day (to not spoil the game to the less knowledgeable users) before trying a harder challenge: by heart, explain the meaning of every single distribution shown -e.g. provide the correct key of the masked legend on the right.
The DZERO collaboration has just produced an update of their analysis of the dimuon charge asymmetry using 9.0 inverse femtobarns of proton-antiproton collisions. The new result confirms the previously reported effect, raising the discrepancy with the Standard Model prediction to over four standard deviations.
"I envy University Professors. They are paid to question people who know nothing but try very hard to say something, while I have to question people who know everything but do their utmost to say nothing at all."
Piercamillo Davigo, Italian Judge investigating corrupt politicians