Academic Year 2022/2023 - Teacher: Alessia Rita TRICOMI

Expected Learning Outcomes

The course is aimed to provide an advanced knowledge of the particle physics phenomenology. In particular, the course is aimed to critically discuss the latest achievements  in particle physics analysing the results obtained at LEP, TeVatron and LHC. The student will acquire a critical knowledge about the Standard Model, the discovery and calssification of elementary particles, the Higgs mechanism and the possible extension of the Standard Model, the research methodology and the obtained results.

Course Structure

The course is based on lectures with student active participation.

Should the circumstances require online or blended teaching, appropriate modifications to what is hereby stated may be introduced, in order to achieve the main objectives of the course.

Required Prerequisites

It is not mandatory but surely the student will benefit of the following courses

“Advanced Quantum Mechanics”, “Nuclear and Particle Physics”, “Strong Interactions”

Attendance of Lessons

Attendance to the course is usually compulsory (consult the Academic Regulations of the Course of Studies)

Detailed Course Content

  • Remind of leptons and quarks properties and gauge theories (QED and QCD).
  • Mesons, Baryons and exotic states.
  • Heavy Flavour Physics.
  • Quantum Cromo-Dynamics (QCD). Properties of quarks and gluons. Asymptotic freedom and Confinement. The running of coupling constants. Jet properties and identification criteria. Sphericity, thrust and topological variables. Measurement of αstrong in tau and hadronic multi-jet events.
  • The Standard Model of electroweak interactions. The EW lagrangian. Massless gauge bosons. The Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking mechanism.
  • Z and W boson properties: neutral and charged currents. Properties and decays of the intermediate vector bosons.
  • Electroweak Physics: precision test of the SM (sin2θW, Z lineshape parameters, W mass and cross-section, neutrino families, top quark). Leptonic and hadronic event selection. B tagging techniques. Tau tagging techniques. EW global fit.
  • Higgs Mechanism. The search for the SM Higgs boson. Results from LEP, TeVatron and LHC.  The discovery of the Higgs boson at LHC
  • Heavy Flavour Physics: charm, bottom, top. Properties of heavy quarks. Latest results in heavy flavour Physics at e+e- and hadron colliders
  • CP violation: CP violation in K and B mesons. Cabibbo-Kobayashi-Maskawa matrix. Measurement of sin 2β. Direct and indirect decays. Mixing. Neutral B meson oscillations. B factories. The unitarity triangle and UTFit.
  • Beyond the Standard Model Physics: limits of the SM. BSM. GUT. BSM Higgs boson Physics. MSSM: search for SUSY particles at LEP and TeVatron. Search for SUSY particles at LHC.
  • New accelerators: the energy vs. intensity frontier. 

Textbook Information

The use of minutes of the lectures as well as of summary papers provided during the course is strongly suggested 

Reference books:

Dynamics of the Standard Model - J. Donoughue -Cambridge Mongraphs

Quarks and Leptons: An Introductory Course in Modern Particle Physics - F. Halzen, A.D. Martin

Introduction to Particle Physics - A. Bettini - Cambridge University Press

Course Planning

 SubjectsText References
1Overview of the lepton and quark properties and of gauge theories 6-8 hourslecture notes and slides
2Mesons, Baryons and exotic states2-4lecture notes/slide/papers
3QCDQuarks and gluonsAsymptotic freedom and confinement 
4Running of the coupling constants 
5Jet properties and identification
6Measurement of alpha strong 
7The Electroweak Standard Modellecture notes
8Electroweak lagrangian
9Massless gauge bosons
10Electroweak unification
11Spontenous Symmetry Breaking1-2
12W and Z bosons: charged and neutral currents.Properties and decay of the weak bosons
13Electroweak Physics: precision measurements (sin2thetaW, Z lineshape parameters,W  mass and cross-section, number of neutrino families, top quark).
14Identification of leptonic and hadronic events. b and tau tagging
15Precision test of the Standard Model
16Heavy flavour Physics: charm, bottom, top. Property of heavy flavors. Recent results if the HF sector at colliders
17 sin 2beta measurement. K and B mesons.Mixing.Unitarity triangle. Result at B-factories 
18CP violation and Cabibbo-Kobayashi-Maskawa matrix..
19Search for the Higgs boson at LEP and Tevatron
20The discovery of the Higgs boson at LHC
21Beyond the Standard Model Physics: GUT.
22MSSM: search for supersymmetry at LEP and Tevatron.Search of supersymmetry at LHC

Learning Assessment

Examples of frequently asked questions and / or exercises

The questions below are not an exhaustive list but are just a few examples

Neutrino families

Mechanisms of production and decay of the Higgs boson


Lineshape of the Z boson