CMS Tracker Upgrade & Exotic Higgs Physics
29 Nov 2022





​​Supervisors: Ian Tomalin (RAL/PPD) + Joel Goldstein (Brist​ol University)

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN will be upgraded to become the High-Luminosity LHC (HL-LHC), significantly increasing the rate of proton-proton collisions from 2029. The CMS experiment will be upgraded at the same time in order to ensure that we will get more precise physics measurements and greater sensitivity to new physics in the intense HL-LHC environment. 

At the HL-LHC, the CMS experiment will reconstruct with high-speed electronics, the trajectories of charged particles detected by its silicon tracker. This reconstruction must be done within a few nanoseconds, so these tracks can be used as input to the L1 trigger system, identifying which proton-proton bunch crossings are of sufficient interest for full detector read-out. This is an immensely challenging task, as the tracker will transmit approximately one trillion measurement points to this electronics per second, which must be processed with a sophisticated track reconstruction algorithm. The student will refine our current algorithm, writing HLS or VHDL firmware to implement it on programmable FPGA electronics; and testing its tracking performance with C++ software studies on simulated CMS p-p events. The student can participate in integration tests of this electronics at CERN. 

To give the student a broad range of experience, these studies will be complemented by a search for exotic Higgs bosons (in 2 Higgs Doublet Type 1 models), where in collaboration with Southampton University, PPD has identified a new analysis channel allowing to examine previously unexplored regions of the parameter space. (Alternatively, the student could study how important physics channels are influenced by the L1 tracking at HL-LHC, and use such studies to optimise the L1 tracking). 

 This project will help the student develop many skills that are valued highly both in particle physics and in the wider world. 

For more details please contact Dr. Ian Tomalin (