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"Extraordinary Claims, The 0.000029% Solution" And The 38 MeV Boson AT ICNFP 2014

Yesterday I gave a lecture at the 3rd International Conference on New Frontiers in Physics, which...

More On The Alleged WW Excess From The LHC

This is just a short update on the saga of the anomalous excess of W-boson-pair production that...

A Useful Approximation For The Tail Of A Gaussian

This is just a short post to report about a useful paper I found by preparing for a talk I will...

True And False Discoveries: How To Tell Them Apart

Many new particles and other new physics signals claimed in the last twenty years were later proven...

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Tommaso DorigoRSS Feed of this column.

I am an experimental particle physicist working with the CMS experiment at CERN. In my spare time I play chess, abuse the piano, and aim my dobson telescope at faint galaxies.... Read More »

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Last Friday I was in Pisa, at the Scuola Normale Superiore (see picture), where italian members of the CMS Collaboration gathered for two days to discuss the status of their studies, exchange ideas, and try to coalesce common analysis efforts.
W bosons are amazingly interesting objects. Almost thirty years after their discovery -by Carlo Rubbia and his collaborators of the UA1 experiment at CERN- they continue to provide critical information on the theory of electroweak interactions. The front of particle physics has moved quite a bit further from 1983, and yet the weapons we use todat to try and conquer unexplored land have not changed much. Today I wish to summarize one particular search that has been done by the CDF experiment at the Tevatron proton-antiproton collider, one which tries to catch W bosons as they decay in a very uncommon way.
I have been lagging behind lately with my usual browsing of other physics blogs. So let me catch up here and suggest a few posts which should be interesting to read.

  • Peter Woit is always an extremely well-informed source of information. In a post titled "The Entropy Decade" he recently discussed how the 2010s appear to show a trend: entropy appears to be a concept that will yield more information about the universe and fundamental physics. In another he has a wealth of information on recent articles and sources.
I have many friends around the world. Some of them are far away, some live close by; but it is not the spatial separation what determines how often we meet, talk, or spend time together: it is rather a combination of chance, will, and expendiency. There are friends who live one block away which I have not seen in ages, since we do not even bump into each other, as we get out to work and return home at different times of the day. And friends who live in another continent, which I meet every time I travel there. And the Internet has simplified things, but not entirely removed the problem.
"On the infrequent occasions when I have been called upon in a formal place to play the bongo drums, the introducer never seems to find it necessary to mention that I also do theoretical physics."

(Richard Feynman)
A weekly visit to the Cornell Arxiv is more than enough for a physicist like me, since my daily work is not affected too much by whatever happens to be published there. Oftentimes, when I browse the contents of hep-ph (the folder containing preprints on particle phenomenology) I do not end up actually reading any papers, and limit myself to "sniffing" what is going on, by looking at the titles and author names. But at times I venture to browse through the pages, with mixed results.