The experimental particle physics group at UVA is currently making major contributions to the CMS, NOvA, Mu2e, and LDMX experiments:
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CMS The Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment is one of two large general-purpose particle physics detectors built on the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN in Switzerland and France. The goal of CMS experiment is to investigate a wide range of physics, including the search for the Higgs boson , extra dimension , and particles that could make up dark matter . The CMS group (Cox, Hirosky, Neu) has a wide range of physics interests, including Higgs boson and top quark studies, standard model measurements, and searches for supersymmetric particles and other exotic forms of matter. Our detector efforts have focused on the CMS electromagnetic and hadronic calorimeters and we are currently leading upgrade efforts for the CMS calorimeters and for a new dedicated precision timing detector for charged particle tracks in the High-Luminosity LHC era. NOvA The NOvA (NuMI Off-axis ν Appearance) experiment is shedding light on one of nature's most elusive particles: neutrinos. Since the late 1990s, physicists have known that neutrinos exhibit a quantum mechanical behavior called oscillations. But this behavior is not predicted by the Standard Model of particle physics. NOvA is working to better understand these strange particles through precision measurements of their oscillation properties. The UVA group lead the effort to design and fabricate the NOvA Power Distribution System and is actively involved in physics analysis for this ongoing and world-leading neutrino experiment. Mu2e The Mu2e experiment will search for new physics through lepton-number violation: that is, muons decaying into electrons without any associated neutrinos. This is an example of a relatively low-energy experiment probing energy scales unattainable by any existing or proposed accelerator-based collider experiment. UVA leads the effort to design and fabricate one of the three main detectors for Mu2e, the Cosmic Ray Veto. The ongoing fabrication is one of the largest undertakings ever by the High Energy Physics group at UVA. LDMX
The constituents of dark matter are unknown, and the viable possibilities span a very large mass range. The region ~MeV to ~GeV is largely unexplored. If there is an interaction between this "light" dark matter and ordinary matter, then there necessarily is a production mechanism in accelerator-based experiments. The most sensitive way to search for this production is to use a primary electron beam to produce dark matter in ï¬xed-target collisions. The Light Dark Matter eXperiment (LDMX) is a proposed experiment that has sensitivity to light DM in the sub-GeV range. In addition to the exciting possibility to detect and study the dark sector, the UVA group is interested in fabricating the hadronic veto calorimeter which plans to use a very similar technology as the Mu2e CRV which is currently being fabricated at UVA.
Professor Cox has been involved in many experiments at Brookhaven National Laboratory, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory and CERN Lab in Geneva, Switzerland, studying electroweak interactions, quantum chromodynamics, heavy flavor production, and time reversal violation in the kaon system. Prof. Cox has acted as scientific spokesman for several of these experiments. He was a professor at Johns Hopkins University and Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory before joining the University of Virginia faculty to found the experimental particle physics ... More>
Dukes: Professor Dukes’ research is in experimental Elementary Particle Physics where he has worked on experiments at all of the major accelerator laboratories in the world, and held visiting positions at: Brookhaven National Laboratory, CERN Lab in Geneva, Switzerland, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and the SSC. He is currently the head of the Antimatter Asymmetry Group at the University of Virginia. More>
Group: What are the most fundamental pieces of our Universe? What are their properties and how do they interact with each other to form the structure and the phenomena that we observe? More>
Hirosky: Professor Hirosky’s current research explores questions in Elementary Particle Physics at the CERN LHC Collider in Geneva Switzerland. The goals of performing research at the energy frontier are many-fold. While the Standard Model has survived a wide variety of experimental tests, numerous fundamental questions remain: Does Nature yet hold undiscovered symmetries and physical laws? Are there hidden dimensions of space-time? The universe appears to contain vast quantities of gravitational mass of unknown origin, what is the nature of this dark matter? What happened to the ... More>
Prof. Neu's research program focuses on the building blocks of the Universe and how those building blocks interact. He studies exotic forms of matter produced at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN as a collaborator on the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment.
His specific interests focus on the characterization of the Higgs boson. The recent discovery of the Higgs boson has solved a significant open question in modern physics: How do the fundamental particles obtain mass? The discovery of the Higgs boson provided direct evidence for the best theory for the ... More>