1,403 research outputs found

    Simplified SIMPs and the LHC

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    The existence of Dark Matter (DM) in the form of Strongly Interacting Massive Particles (SIMPs) may be motivated by astrophysical observations that challenge the classical Cold DM scenario. Other observations greatly constrain, but do not completely exclude, the SIMP alternative. The signature of SIMPs at the LHC may consist of neutral, hadron-like, trackless jets produced in pairs. We show that the absence of charged content can provide a very efficient tool to suppress dijet backgrounds at the LHC, thus enhancing the sensitivity to a potential SIMP signal. We illustrate this using a simplified SIMP model and present a detailed feasibility study based on simulations, including a dedicated detector response parametrization. We evaluate the expected sensitivity to various signal scenarios and tentatively consider the exclusion limits on the SIMP elastic cross section with nucleons.Comment: 18 pages, 7 figure

    Acidity promotes degradation of multi-species environmental DNA in lotic mesocosms

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    Accurate quantification of biodiversity is fundamental to understanding ecosystem function and for environmental assessment. Molecular methods using environmental DNA (eDNA) offer a non-invasive, rapid, and cost-effective alternative to traditional biodiversity assessments, which require high levels of expertise. While eDNA analyses are increasingly being utilized, there remains considerable uncertainty regarding the dynamics of multispecies eDNA, especially in variable systems such as rivers. Here, we utilize four sets of upland stream mesocosms, across an acid–base gradient, to assess the temporal and environmental degradation of multispecies eDNA. Sampling included water column and biofilm sampling over time with eDNA quantified using qPCR. Our findings show that the persistence of lotic multispecies eDNA, sampled from water and biofilm, decays to non-detectable levels within 2 days and that acidic environments accelerate the degradation process. Collectively, the results provide the basis for a predictive framework for the relationship between lotic eDNA degradation dynamics in spatio-temporally dynamic river ecosystems

    South African research in the Southern Ocean: New opportunities but serious challenges

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    South Africa has a long track record in Southern Ocean and Antarctic research and has recently invested considerable funds in acquiring new infrastructure for ongoing support of this research. This infrastructure includes a new base at Marion Island and a purpose-built ice capable research vessel, which greatly expand research opportunities. Despite this investment, South Africa's standing as a participant in this critical field is threatened by confusion, lack of funding, lack of consultation and lack of transparency. The research endeavour is presently bedevilled by political manoeuvring among groups with divergent interests that too often have little to do with science, while past and present contributors of research are excluded from discussions that aim to formulate research strategy. This state of affairs is detrimental to the country's aims of developing a leadership role in climate change and Antarctic research and squanders both financial and human capital

    Exploring South Africa’s southern frontier: A 20-year vision for polar research through the South African National Antarctic Programme

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    Antarctica, the sub-Antarctic islands and surrounding Southern Ocean are regarded as one of the planet’s last remaining wildernesses, ‘insulated from threat by [their] remoteness and protection under the Antarctic Treaty System’1 . Antarctica encompasses some of the coldest, windiest and driest habitats on earth. Within the Southern Ocean, sub-Antarctic islands are found between the Sub-Antarctic Front to the north and the Polar Front to the south. Lying in a transition zone between warmer subtropical and cooler Antarctic waters, these islands are important sentinels from which to study climate change.2 A growing body of evidence3,4 now suggests that climatically driven changes in the latitudinal boundaries of these two fronts define the islands’ short- and long-term atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns. Consequently, sub-Antarctic islands and their associated terrestrial and marine ecosystems offer ideal natural laboratories for studying ecosystem response to change.5 For example, a recent study6 indicates that the shift in the geographical position of the oceanic fronts has disrupted inshore marine ecosystems, with a possible impact on top predators. Importantly, biotic responses are variable as indicated by different population trends of these top predators.7,8 When studied collectively, these variations in species’ demographic patterns point to complex spatial and temporal changes within the broader sub-Antarctic ecosystem, and invite further examination of the interplay between extrinsic and intrinsic drivers

    Measurement of differential cross sections for top quark pair production using the lepton plus jets final state in proton-proton collisions at 13 TeV

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    National Science Foundation (U.S.

    Identification of heavy-flavour jets with the CMS detector in pp collisions at 13 TeV

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    Many measurements and searches for physics beyond the standard model at the LHC rely on the efficient identification of heavy-flavour jets, i.e. jets originating from bottom or charm quarks. In this paper, the discriminating variables and the algorithms used for heavy-flavour jet identification during the first years of operation of the CMS experiment in proton-proton collisions at a centre-of-mass energy of 13 TeV, are presented. Heavy-flavour jet identification algorithms have been improved compared to those used previously at centre-of-mass energies of 7 and 8 TeV. For jets with transverse momenta in the range expected in simulated tt‟\mathrm{t}\overline{\mathrm{t}} events, these new developments result in an efficiency of 68% for the correct identification of a b jet for a probability of 1% of misidentifying a light-flavour jet. The improvement in relative efficiency at this misidentification probability is about 15%, compared to previous CMS algorithms. In addition, for the first time algorithms have been developed to identify jets containing two b hadrons in Lorentz-boosted event topologies, as well as to tag c jets. The large data sample recorded in 2016 at a centre-of-mass energy of 13 TeV has also allowed the development of new methods to measure the efficiency and misidentification probability of heavy-flavour jet identification algorithms. The heavy-flavour jet identification efficiency is measured with a precision of a few per cent at moderate jet transverse momenta (between 30 and 300 GeV) and about 5% at the highest jet transverse momenta (between 500 and 1000 GeV)

    Evidence for the Higgs boson decay to a bottom quark–antiquark pair

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