Journal Club

Seminar Room

If you want to propose a paper, you can contact Supratim Das Bakshi (sdb AT

Monday 18th of February, 2019

A Dark Matter Interpretation of the ANITA Anomalous Events

The ANITA collaboration recently reported the detection of two anomalous upward-propagating extensive air showers exiting the Earth with relatively large emergence angles and energies in the range $\mathcal{O}(0.5\!-\!1)~\mathrm{EeV}$. We interpret these two events as coming from the decay of a massive dark-matter candidate ($m_\text{DM}\!\gtrsim\! 10^{9}~\mathrm{GeV}$) decaying into a pair of right-handed neutrinos. While propagating through the Earth, these extremely boosted decay products convert eventually to $\tau$-leptons which loose energy during their propagation and produce showers in the atmosphere detectable by ANITA at emergence angles larger than what Standard-Model neutrinos could ever produce. We performed Monte Carlo simulations to estimate the propagation and energy loss effects and derived differential effective areas and number of events for the ANITA and the IceCube detectors. Interestingly, the expected number of events for IceCube is of the very same order of magnitude than the number of events observed by ANITA but at larger emergence angles, and energies $\lesssim 0.1~\mathrm{EeV}$. Such features match perfectly with the presence of the two upward-going events IceCube-140109 and IceCube-121205 that have been exhibited from a recent re-analysis of IceCube data samples.
Comments: 17 pages, 10 figures
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena (astro-ph.HE); High Energy Physics - Experiment (hep-ex)
Cite as: arXiv:1902.04584 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1902.04584v1 [hep-ph] for this version)

presented by MM

Observable signatures of dark photons from supernovae

A dark photon is a well-motivated new particle which, as a component of an associated dark sector, could explain dark matter. One strong limit on dark photons arises from excessive cooling of supernovae. We point out that even at couplings where too few dark photons are produced in supernovae to violate the cooling bound, they can be observed directly through their decays. Supernovae produce dark photons which decay to positrons, giving a signal in the 511 keV annihilation line observed by SPI/INTEGRAL. Further, prompt gamma-ray emission by these decaying dark photons gives a signal for gamma-ray telescopes. Existing GRS observations of SN1987a already constrain this, and a future nearby SN could provide a detection. Finally, dark photon decays from extragalactic SN would produce a diffuse flux of gamma rays observable by detectors such as SMM and HEAO-1. Together these observations can probe dark photon couplings several orders of magnitude beyond current constraints for masses of roughly 1 - 100 MeV.
Comments: 13 pages, 2 figures
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena (astro-ph.HE)
Cite as: arXiv:1901.08596 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1901.08596v1 [hep-ph] for this version)


Presented by RVM


Electroweak Baryogenesis From Dark CP Violation

We present a novel mechanism of electroweak baryogenesis where \textit{CP} violation occurs in a dark sector, comprised of standard model gauge singlets, thereby evading the strong electric dipole moment constraints. In this framework, the background of time-like component of a new gauge boson $Z^\prime_\mu$, generated at electroweak temperatures, drives the electroweak sphaleron processes to create the required baryon asymmetry. We first discuss the crucial ingredients for this mechanism to work, and then show that all of them can be elegantly embedded in ultraviolet completions with spontaneously broken gauged lepton number. The models under consideration have a rich phenomenology and can be experimentally probed in leptophilic $Z^\prime$ searches, dark matter searches, heavy Majorana neutrino searches, as well as through hunting for new Higgs portal scalars in multi-lepton channels at colliders.
Comments: 6 pages, 1 figure
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics (astro-ph.CO); High Energy Physics - Experiment (hep-ex)
Report number: FERMILAB-PUB-18-636-T
Cite as: arXiv:1811.09719 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1811.09719v1 [hep-ph] for this version)


presented by RVM

On the Detectability of Light Dark Matter with Superfluid Helium

We show that a two-excitation process in superfluid helium, combined with sensitivity to meV energy depositions, can probe dark matter down to the ~keV warm dark matter mass limit. This mass reach is three orders of magnitude below what can be probed with ordinary nuclear recoils in helium at the same energy resolution. For dark matter lighter than $\sim 100$ keV, the kinematics of the process requires the two athermal excitations to have nearly equal and opposite momentum, potentially providing a built-in coincidence mechanism for controlling backgrounds.
Comments: 5 pages, 2 figures. v2: added references, updated fig 2 and corresponding discussion with simulation data; conclusions unchanged
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics (astro-ph.CO); Other Condensed Matter (cond-mat.other); High Energy Physics - Theory (hep-th)
Journal reference: Phys. Rev. Lett. 117, 121302 (2016)
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.121302
Cite as: arXiv:1604.08206 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1604.08206v2 [hep-ph] for this version)

presented by RVM

Higgs Physics at the HL-LHC and HE-LHC

The discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012, by the ATLAS and CMS experiments, was a success achieved with only a percent of the entire dataset foreseen for the LHC. It opened a landscape of possibilities in the study of Higgs boson properties, Electroweak Symmetry breaking and the Standard Model in general, as well as new avenues in probing new physics beyond the Standard Model. Six years after the discovery, with a conspicuously larger dataset collected during LHC Run 2 at a 13 TeV centre-of-mass energy, the theory and experimental particle physics communities have started a meticulous exploration of the potential for precision measurements of its properties. This includes studies of Higgs boson production and decays processes, the search for rare decays and production modes, high energy observables, and searches for an extended electroweak symmetry breaking sector. This report summarises the potential reach and opportunities in Higgs physics during the High Luminosity phase of the LHC, with an expected dataset of pp collisions at 14 TeV, corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 3~ab$^{-1}$. These studies are performed in light of the most recent analyses from LHC collaborations and the latest theoretical developments. The potential of an LHC upgrade, colliding protons at a centre-of-mass energy of 27 TeV and producing a dataset corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 15~ab$^{-1}$, is also discussed.
Comments: Report from Working Group 2 on the Physics of the HL-LHC, and Perspectives at the HE-LHC, 364 pages
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); High Energy Physics - Experiment (hep-ex)
Report number: CERN-LPCC-2018-04
Cite as: arXiv:1902.00134 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1902.00134v1 [hep-ph] for this version)

presented by PK


Solving Differential Equations with Neural Networks: Applied to the Calculation of Cosmological Phase Transitions

Starting from the observation that artificial neural networks are uniquely suited to solving optimisation problems, and most physics problems can be cast as an optimisation task, we introduce a novel way of finding a numerical solution to wide classes of differential equations. We find our approach to be very flexible and stable without relying on trial solutions, and applicable to ordinary, partial and coupled differential equations. We apply our method to the calculation of tunnelling profiles for cosmological phase transitions, which is a problem of relevance for baryogenesis and stochastic gravitational wave spectra. Comparing our solutions with publicly available codes which use numerical methods optimised for the calculation of tunnelling profiles, we find our approach to provide at least as accurate results as these dedicated differential equation solvers, and for some parameter choices even more accurate and reliable solutions. We point out that this approach of using artificial neural networks to solve equations is viable for any problem that can be cast into the form $\mathcal{F}(\vec{x})=0$, and is thus applicable to various other problems in perturbative and non-perturbative quantum field theory.
Comments: 11 pages, 9 figures
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph); High Energy Physics - Theory (hep-th)
Report number: IPPP/19/11
Cite as: arXiv:1902.05563 [hep-ph]
  (or arXiv:1902.05563v1 [hep-ph] for this version)

presented by JS


Amplitudes' Positivity, Weak Gravity Conjecture, and Modified Gravity

We derive new positivity bounds for scattering amplitudes in theories with a massless graviton in the spectrum, of relevance for the weak gravity conjecture and modified gravity theories. The bounds imply that extremal black holes are self-repulsive, $M/|Q|<1$ in suitable units, and that they are unstable to decay to smaller extremal black holes, providing an S-matrix proof of the weak gravity conjecture. We also present other applications of our bounds to the effective field theory of axions, $P(X)$ theories, weakly broken galileons, and curved spacetimes.
Comments: v1: 8 pages, 1 figure
Subjects: High Energy Physics - Theory (hep-th); General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology (gr-qc); High Energy Physics - Phenomenology (hep-ph)
Cite as: arXiv:1902.03250 [hep-th]
  (or arXiv:1902.03250v1 [hep-th] for this version)

presented by JCC