Recent Conferences

Last week the 2005 International Linear Collider Workshop was held at SLAC, and the talks are available on-line. At the conference it was announced that Barry Barish of Caltech would lead the Global Design Effort for the International Linear Collider. The hope is to finish a design for the ILC in 2007, have a site chosen in 2008 and construction done by 2015, allowing the ILC to run at the same time as the LHC for several years, with each machine providing data that could help decide how best to use the other one.

This schedule seems overly optimistic to me. Because of the huge US deficits, getting the kinds of increases in the DOE budget needed to build the ILC in the US looks quite difficult, and, even if this were possible, funding constraints would probably stretch out the construction schedule. In Europe, CERN is devoting all its resources for a while to the LHC, and is backing an alternate, more speculative linear collider technology called CLIC. The most likely course of events seems to be that people will be waiting to see what the LHC finds and how the CLIC technology works out before fully committing to a new linear collider. If so, a decision about what to build and where to build it would probably not take place until almost 2010, with another decade probably required to actually construct the machine.

At the SLAC conference, the main theoretical talk was one by Savas Dimopoulos on New Models about his work with Arkani-Hamed on split supersymmetry and models where both the cosmological constant and the weak scale are anthropically determined aspects of the “Landscape”. There increasingly seems to be a disconnect between the experimentalists planning experiments at the LHC and ILC, whose plans often revolve around the search for low-energy supersymmetry, and the string theory inspired theorists, who are spending their time wandering around the landscape. From the landscape point of view, it seems that low-energy supersymmetry is extremely unlikely.

For more from theorists wandering around the landscape, see the talks at this week’s Workshop on N=1 Compactications at the Fields Institute in Toronto. The talks from this workshop are starting to become available on-line. Next week there will be even more of this at the Fields Institute, as it hosts a Workshop on String Phenomenology.

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5 Responses to Recent Conferences

  1. Lubos Motl says:

    Peter, you should know that Savas and Nima are still leaders in SUSY phenomenology, and if they try something along different lines, it’s because they have broad interests.

    Similar things apply to Shamit.

  2. quantoken says:

    I aready posted something about this paper a few days ago. I pointed out that:
    1.There is no credible experimental evidence for Casimir force or for vacuum energy. The calculated vacuum energy, which is 10^120 times too big so it does not exist.
    2.The Casimir force is supposed to be inverse proportional to the FOURTH power of the gap. Such a sensitive dependency on distance can not be measured by balance of force of balancing a torque, as the Lamoreaux method. His experiment, (which he himself) admittedly conducted using $300 lab scratch materials, can not be trusted.


  3. D R Lunsford says:


    On SPR, T Larsson points to an interesting paper by Jaffe, which argues that the Casimir effect has no direct bearing on the issue of zero-point fluctuations:

    Some sanity! Hope! Of course, some of us are not surprised.


  4. Aaron says:

    “From the landscape point of view, it seems that low-energy supersymmetry is extremely unlikely.”

    Enh. The landscape can tell you pretty much whatever you want it to.

  5. Arun says:

    Maybe China could be persuaded to finance the ILC, instead of increasing its defence budget by 12.6% over last year? The increase amounts to about 3.4 billion dollars.

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