I’m delighted to see Jester back in action, providing great material on the current state of HEP physics, with, over the past week and a half:
- A sober look at the sparse prospects for near-term (i.e. 2014) input from experiment, with the Planck CMB polarization results one of the few things for which there are significant expectations.
- An equally sober look at the problem of making the case for a 100 TeV collider, given that this will be the first time people don’t have a “no-lose theorem” showing that something new has to turn up in the new energy range being explored (of course the argument that it’s an unexplored new energy range remains an excellent one by itself for the exploration). About the arguments Arkani-Hamed is making, Jester has:
Nima’s idea that we need a 100 TeV collider to prove that SUSY fine-tuning is larger than 0.01% is good. As a joke to relax the atmosphere. Certainly, the case for the new collider can be made stronger than that.Some ideas that are being bandied around are precision Higgs physics, double Higgs production, rare Higgs and top decays, non-perturbative electroweak effects, or WW scattering. These topics can be made more concrete and several more items can be added to the list.
- To give us all some hope, he has some news about a possible astrophysical X-ray spectrum signal that could conceivably be evidence for a sterile neutrino dark matter candidate. Right-handed neutrino fields fit naturally into the SM pattern of fundamental fields, but with zero SU(3)xSU(2)xU(1) charges. That such fields have something to do with dark matter looks more promising than the SUSY or axion proposals of introducing a new and different sector of fields. My knowledge of neutrino physics isn’t what it should be, so I’d be curious to hear of good references about the sterile neutrino dark matter issue.
Update: For some idea of the case being made for a larger collider, one might want to take a look at talks in Beijing a few days ago, where there’s a proposal for the Chinese to build it. Talks at a conference are here, and last Sunday there was a big event featuring Yau, Gross, Witten, Arkani-Hamed, ‘t Hooft, Maiani and Incandela, video here. On the whole people seem to be pretty much sticking to making the generic case for high energy, not promising superpartners or extra dimensions this time.