Discovery Magazine

Experimental High Energy Physics Research

Our experimental physics team currently focuses its hardware efforts on R&D for a forward muon upgrade of the CMS experiment with GEM detectors. We are pursuing a multi-year program of developing a production and testing site for CMS
high-η GEM detectors at Florida Tech to complement chamber production at CERN. We are currently assembling and testing GE1/1 muon endcap prototype GEM chambers in our cleanroom facilities. Our team is contributing to the development of software for adapting the RD51 Scalable Readout System for use in GEM chamber R&D. The experimental physics group participated in 2012 beam tests of GEM prototype chambers at CERN and will be conducting beam tests at Fermilab in fall 2013. We are continuing the development of our future chamber production and testing site based on lessons learned. Dr. Hohlmann is serving as the deputy coordinator for the CMS GEM chamber R&D and production effort. In addition to technical work, Dr. Hohlmann has managerial responsibilities in this experimental physics project as chair of the collaboration board of the CMS GEM collaboration that has formed around the CMS high-η muon upgrade effort. 

On the experimental physics analysis side, we are searching for Z′ bosons in the dimuon channel based on the full 7 TeV and 8 TeV CMS data sets. We are improving t-tbar MC statistics for the Z′ search using the resources of our Tier 3 cluster and plan to investigate the kinematics of the dimuon events to look for any anomalies. With the CMS exotica resonance working group we have helped to set limits on Z′ production based on the full 2011/12 data sets. In support of experimental physics analysis efforts, students operate a local CMS Tier-3 site on the Open Science Grid, which delivered ~500k CPU hours to CMS users and ~1M CPU hours to Grid users overall so far, and they commissioned a Center for Tier-3 operations in our labs on campus.