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A Hidden Gem At An Old Experiment?

21 Oct 2016, 15:19 UTC
A Hidden Gem At An Old Experiment?
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This summer there was a blog post from Sabine Hossenfelder claiming that “The LHC `nightmare scenario’ has come true” — implying that the Large Hadron Collider [LHC] has found nothing but a Standard Model Higgs particle (the simplest possible type), and will find nothing more of great importance. With all due respect for the considerable intelligence and technical ability of the author of that post, I could not disagree more; not only are we not in a nightmare, it isn’t even night-time yet, and hardly time for sleep or even daydreaming. There’s a tremendous amount of work to do, and there may be many hidden discoveries yet to be made, lurking in existing LHC data. Or elsewhere.
I can defend this claim (and have done so as recently as this month; here are my slides). But there’s evidence from another quarter that it is far too early for such pessimism. It has appeared in a new paper (a preprint, so not yet peer-reviewed) by an experimentalist named Arno Heister, who is evaluating 20-year old data from the experiment known as ALEPH.
In the early 1990s the Large Electron-Positron (LEP) collider at CERN, in the same tunnel that now houses the ...

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