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Title: Higher order QCD corrections to diboson production at hadron colliders
Author: Rontsch, Raoul Horst
ISNI:       0000 0004 2746 0269
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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Hadronic collider experiments have played a major role in particle physics phenomenology over the last few decades. Data recorded at the Tevatron at Fermilab is still of interest, and its successor, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN, has recently announced the discovery of a particle consistent with the Standard Model Higgs boson. Hadronic colliders look set to guide the field for the next fifteen years or more, with the discovery of more particles anticipated. The discovery and detailed study of new particles relies crucially on the availability of high-precision theoretical predictions for both the signal and background processes. This requires observables to be calculated to next-to-leading order (NLO) in perturbative quantum chromodynamics (QCD). Many hadroproduction processes of interest contain multiple particles in the final state. Until recently, this caused a bottleneck in NLO QCD calculations, due to the difficulty in calculating one-loop corrections to processes involving three or more final state particles. Spectacular developments in on-shell methods over the last six years have made these calculations feasible, allowing highly accurate predictions for final state observables at the Tevatron and LHC. A particular realisation of on-shell methods, generalised unitarity, is used to compute the NLO QCD cross-sections and distributions for two processes: the hadroproduction of W+ W-jj, and the hadroproduction of W+ W-jj. The NLO corrections to both processes serve to reduce the scale dependence of the results significantly, while having a moderate effect on the central scale choice cross-sections, and leaving the shapes of the kinematic distributions mostly unchanged. Additionally, the gluon fusion contribution to the next-to-next-to-leading order (NNLO) QCD corrections to W+ W-j productions are studied. These contributions are found to be highly depen- dent on the kinematic cuts used. For cuts used in Higgs searches, the gluon fusion effect can be as large as the NLO scale uncertainty, and should not be neglected. All of the higher-order QCD corrections increase the accuracy and reliability of the theoretical predictions at hadronic colliders.
Supervisor: Zanderighi, Giulia; Ross, Graham Sponsor: Rhodes House
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Theoretical physics ; Elementary particle theory ; collider phenomenology ; NLO computations ; Hadronic colliders