AAAS Annual Meeting Physics Symposium: The Dark Matter of the Universe - Supersymmetry and Beyond

chaired by Maria Spiropulu, Michael Turner
Sunday, 17 February 2013 from to (US/Pacific)
at Room 313, Hynes Convention Center, Boston

The working hypothesis for the composition of the universe includes a staggering approximately 28 percent of a new form of matter called “dark matter”, not accounted for by the standard model of particle physics. Our understanding of the formation of structure in the universe hinges on the dark matter being a new particle that is slowing moving, known as “cold dark matter”.

A leading particle candidate for the dark matter is the WIMP (weakly interacting massive particle, with mass between 10 and 1,000 times that of the proton). The WIMP is strongly motivated by supersymmetry and detectable also as a product of the highest energy proton-proton collisions at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC).

With the largest LHC datasets, the increased sensitivity of a multitude of direct dark matter detection experiments, and new “telescopes” -- such as AMS, Fermi-LAT etc -- the next decade is set to be the time of truth for the WIMP hypothesis.

This is a timely symposium that will discuss the current big crossroad of particle physics and cosmology.

Organizer: Prof. Maria Spiropulu, Caltech
Co-Organizer, Prof. Michael Turner, University of Chicago


News Briefing: Sunday, Feb 17, 10 EST, Room 105  (Any advance news releases should be marked: "Embargoed: Not for release until 10:00 a.m. ET, Sunday, 17 February, 2013.)"

Do not miss the Higgs symposium on Monday at 9:45 Room 306 The Higgs Boson: Past, Present, and Future

Go to day
  • Sunday, 17 February 2013
    • 10:00 - 10:45 Press Briefing (Joint Dark Matter Symposium & AMS):

      Prof. Sam Ting, Thomas Dudley Cabot Professor of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
      The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) is a particle physics experiment designed to search for various types of unusual matter by measuring cosmic rays. Its experiments help researchers study the formation of the Universe and search for evidence of dark matter as well as investigate antimatter. Installed on the ISS in May 2011, the AMS should be releasing its first results in time for the AAAS meeting.
      From the Monday session Science from the Space Station

      Convener: Tim Radford (The Guardian)
      Location: Room 101 ( Hynes Convention Center )
      Material: slides pdf file
    • 13:30 - 13:50 The Dark Universe 20'

      This talk will introduce the state of the Universe and its "dark" contents. It will survey the importance of the Dark Universe and explain why we are at the threshold of Discovery.

      Prof. Michael Turner, University of Chicago
      A theoretical cosmologist trained in both particle physics and astrophysics, Michael Turner coined the term “dark energy” and helped establish the interdisciplinary field that combines cosmology and elementary particle physics. He is the Rauner Distinguished Service Professor and Director of the Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics at the University of Chicago

      Speaker: Michael Turner (University of Chicago)
      Material: Slides powerpoint file
    • 14:05 - 14:30 Status of Dark Matter in Direct, Indirect & Collider Experiments 25'

      The properties of dark matter may be influenced by new forces that effect how dark matter interacts with itself and with ordinary matter. Such forces can lead to new signals in direct or indirect dark matter searches, and might explain some of the anomalous results already reported by such searches. Interacting dark matter may also explain the mysterious properties of dwarf galaxies. I will review the theoretical models and their experimental motivation, and discuss the prospects to test these scenarios in the near future.

      Prof. Neal Weiner, NYU
      With his focus on physics beyond the standard model Neal Weiner is a theoretical physicist whose work has included studies of extra dimensional theories, supersymmetry, grand unification, dark matter, inflation and dark energy, as well as the relationships between the different subjects.

      Speaker: Neal Weiner (NYU)
      Material: Slides pdf file
    • 14:30 - 14:45 Coffee Break
    • 14:45 - 15:10 Dark Matter at the LHC (CMS) 25'

      The talk will cover the searches for dark matter candidates in the context of supersymmetry and beyond with the CMS detector. Latest results from data taken during the 2012 8 TeV run will be shown. Emphasis will be put on the experimental journey towards teasing out particle dark matter candidates out of the billions of the highest energy proton-proton collision events at the LHC.

      Prof. Claudio Campagnari, UCSB
      With a life-long research program in collider physics Claudio Campagnari's work spans the era of the discovery of the top quark (Tevatron,1995) to the Higgs boson (LHC, 2012) as well as measurements towards the understanding of the matter-antimatter asymmetry in the Universe ((PEP-II B-factory, 2002). In the past years his interests have been focused on the search for dark matter with the LHC data.

      Speaker: Claudio Campagnari (University of California at Santa Barbara)
      Material: Slides powerpoint file
    • 15:15 - 15:40 Dark Matter at the LHC (ATLAS) 25'

      The talk will cover the searches for dark matter candidates in the context of supersymmetry and beyond with the CMS detector. Latest results from data taken during the 2012 8 TeV run will be shown. Emphasis will be put on the implications and interpretations of the LHC dark matter search results as well as the impact of this knowledge on the direct and indirect experimental searches for dark matter candidates.

      Prof. Dan Tovey, University of Sheffield, UK
      Spokesperson and Principal Investigator of ATLAS-UK, representing the 15 UK institutions participating in the international ATLAS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider, Dan Tovey's main research interest is the hunt for supersymmetry - a new theory that could explain the origin and the nature of dark matter in the universe.

      Speaker: Dan Tovery (University of Sheffield)
      Material: Slides powerpoint file
    • 15:50 - 16:15 Dark Matter 25'

      Despite years of searching, we still don't know at a fundamental level what constitutes dark matter. We know its gravitational effects but little else. I discuss possible dark matter candidate particles and how we will tell which of them--if any--is out there in the universe.

      Lisa Randall, Frank B.Baird, Jr., Professor of Physics, Harvard University
      Lisa Randall's research connects theoretical insights to the deepest mysteries in our current understanding of particle physics and cosmology. She has developed innovative models to address these questions, the most prominent involving extra dimensions of space. Randall’s research also explores ways to experimentally test ideas using the Large Hadron Collider and dark matter searches. Her studies have made her among the most cited and influential theoretical physicists in the world today. Randall is the author of two NYT Notable Books of the Year: Warped Passages and Knocking on Heaven's Door. Last summer she published an e-book Higgs Discovery: The Power of Empty Space.

      Speaker: Lisa Randall (Harvard University)
      Material: Slides powerpoint file