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Title: Constraining the supersymmetric parameter space with early data from the Compact Muon Solenoid experiment
Author: Whyntie, Tom
ISNI:       0000 0004 2724 0709
Awarding Body: Imperial College London
Current Institution: Imperial College London
Date of Award: 2012
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The year 2010 saw the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) collect 35:1 pb-1 of 7TeV proton-proton collision data. This thesis reports on the work carried out by the candidate as part of the calculation of the first constraints placed upon the supersymmetric parameter space using measurements made with this data. In particular, the development and application of the kinematic techniques used to ensure that the search was robust to detector mismeasurements, inherent in any early phase of data-taking, are discussed. The Constrained Minimally Supersymmetric Standard Model (CMSSM) is introduced to demonstrate how supersymmetry may extend the Standard Model of particle physics, and is used as the benchmark signal to investigate how supersymmetry may appear in 7TeV proton-proton collisions. The role of kinematics in early searches for such signals is then discussed; given the final state topology of interest (particle jets and large missing transverse momentum), particular attention is paid to errors that are due to detector mismeasurements, and how these may be accounted for with an appropriate choice of observable. A search strategy based upon these principles and applied to the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment is then described, as used in the first published search for supersymmetry with LHC data reported in Phys. Lett. B 698 (2011) 196. The kinematic characterisation of events discussed above is exploited to ensure that the search is robust to mismeasurement. The thesis concludes with a summary of the search results. The observed number of events fulfilling the signal criteria is compatible with that expected from the Standard Model alone. The subsequent exclusion limits, given at the 95% Confidence Level, place significantly greater constraints upon the supersymmetric parameter space than those of previous experiments.
Supervisor: Hall, Geoffrey Sponsor: Science and Technology Facilities Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral