This award funds the research activities of Professor Nikolaos Kidonakis at Kennesaw State University.
This research project will involve calculations for the production of elementary particles such as the top quark, the Higgs boson, and Z bosons at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), the world's highest-energy collider. The top quark is the most massive fundamental particle that has ever been discovered: it has many unique properties and may be crucial to understanding the origin of electroweak symmetry breaking. For these reasons, the top quark was the centerpiece of the physics program at the Tevatron collider at Fermilab, and it is now a central part of the physics program at the LHC. Similarly, the Higgs boson is the particle thought to be responsible for mass generation and its discovery is also a priority for the LHC. As part of this project, Professor Kidonakis will improve theoretical predictions for top-quark production in top-antitop and single-top channels as well as for Higgs production and other processes. He will do this by performing state-of-the-art calculations of higher-order corrections. These calculations will ultimately be important for understanding the implications of upcoming LHC data.
This work is also envisioned to have significant broader impacts. The proposed research is very timely since it addresses physics that is relevant to the LHC. The research findings will also be widely disseminated through publication in refereed journals and presentations in international conferences and workshops. Finally, this project will strengthen the educational and research programs at Kennesaw State University. Professor Kidonakis has actively involved undergraduate and graduate students in his research, and this project offers numerous research and educational opportunities for student involvement.