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Supersymmetry and the Large Hadron Collider

The scientific approach 19.09.2016 at 07:17

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In 2008, the construction of the Large hadron Collider, or LHC, was completed. At the same time, I visited CERN, where I was offered a tour of the main experimental installations of the LHC. I usually participated in conferences CERN, but a tour of a working plant made a lasting impression on me. The experimental setup was called "compact muon solenoid". It was quite small by the standards of CERN, the device size only three-story house, and I witnessed the final Assembly of all components. A massive cone-shaped contraption was placed inside a barrel housing of the detector - it was like a lot of huge digital cameras, lenses of which facing toward the center of the detector, where they faced high-energy proton beams.

after the tour, we had a little climb in the French Alps: nothing complicated for a good climber. I managed to get to the top of the Aiguille du MIDI and found that there is a cable car which we went down to lying at the foot of the mountain town. The ridge on which we were raised, different dense traffic, despite the fact that the trail is very narrow and covered with snow. For some reasons all climbers prefer to climb it in the bundle, although I always thought that the partner of the climbing is not very reliable anchor. In the case where one of the partners breaks down, the other have to put a lot of effort to stay on his feet and not to go after the companion. I don't like to walk in conjunction and prefer climbing to rely on the strength of his hands and hammered the hook. However, I must admit that climbing with a colleague made a bundle, like all the others my partner was a very experienced climber, and the ridge looked difficult to pass.

Now, in retrospect, I think that climbing in tandem on a narrow ridge can serve as a good metaphor for the story of the Higgs boson, in the hope the opening of which (among other things) built the TANK. Imagine that you are standing on the narrow crest of a ridge, barely maintaining balance. Step left, step right - and you fly into the abyss. In the same position are tachyons in string theory: they balance in a very unstable equilibrium and the slightest disturbance sends them into a fatal fall down the slope. But that's not all. Imagine that on the ridge are in the bunch of eight climbers and one of them loses his balance and falls to the left. The second feels the rope tug, knocking him off his feet, and falls after the first - also to the left. Third, praying with a request to help him hold the weight of two fallen comrades, preparing to follow them.

the Only right that can be taken in such circumstances is to jump from the crest to the right and to pray that the rope did not disappoint. But for a number of reasons to make it difficult. Back to tachyons and the Higgs boson. Tachyons are instabilities in any point of space, and this phenomenon of the collective. Tachyons are like the group of climbers going in the bundle. If one tachyon loses his balance and begins to slip into the abyss, he drags nearby "friends".

the Higgs Boson invented to describe tachyon condensation. The tachyon condensation is a term that describes the process of felting tachyon from the ridge into the valley. Imagine that dropped from the ridge, climbers are not broken to death and miraculously saved and landed gently in the valley. There they have "fallen climbers Club". They are tired after a tough climb and not have the strength to climb back up the mountain. Instead, they wander throughout the crowd along the slope, occasionally one of them tries to climb a slope, but slips back. Approximately the same behavior of tachyons condensed in a point of space-time: quantum fluctuations of the tachyon condensate is the Higgs boson.

the Difference between the behavior of the Higgs boson from the behavior of the members of "the Club of the fallen climbers," is that the movement of the Higgs boson is not in ordinary four-dimensional world, and in additional space-time dimensions. Despite the fact that the Higgs boson has long maintained the status of hypothetical particles, it serves to illustrate well-developed physical theory, perhaps the best thing that was invented in recent decades. This theory is called the Standard model. The word "standard" in this case means that the theory is generally accepted, and the word "model" indicates the preliminary, incomplete nature of the theory. The standard model is not limited to the description of tachyon condensation. Among other things, it explains the role of the Higgs boson in the appearance of masses of subatomic particles: electrons and quarks.

In 2010, the experiments at the particle accelerator called the Tevatron, was found a one percent difference in the number of muons and antimuons produced in the decay of heavier particles, which was an indication of the existence of the Higgs boson. Was expected to confirm or refute this hypothesis will help experiments at the Large hadron Collider. It should be noted that even two decades earlier in Texas planned to build for these purposes, the superconducting supercollider, but in 1993 Congress pulled the plug of funding for the project from the outlet of the state budget, saving the American taxpayer ten billion dollars, thanks to the United States ceded its leadership in the field of high-energy physics old Europe, and on 4 July 2012 CERN with great fanfare reported on the long-awaited discovery of the Higgs boson...

so, what is supersymmetry? Operates supersymmetry extra dimensions rather peculiar way. The dimensions on which we usually operate, including additional, form a metric space, i.e. the space of measure, or simply distance. Distance is a number: 2 inches, 10 kilometers, etc. If you add up the two distances, the result is also get the distance. By multiplying the two distances obtained area. But extra dimensions, which operates supersymmetry, are not expressed in numbers - at least not in the usual numbers.

They are expressed anticommutativity numbers, which is a cornerstone of weird math of supersymmetry. Anticommutative numbers play an important role in describing electrons, nucleons, quarks, and other particles called fermions. Despite the fact that I have not given the definition of the terms "anticommutativity" and "fermion", I will still use them, just to call a spade a spade, not venturing into the jungle very complex mathematics. The extra dimensions of supersymmetry are called fermionic dimensions.

Fermion measure, in contrast to the normal, impose a number of restrictions on the nature of the possible movements. The particle can move in the fermion dimension forward or backward or at rest, but when moving it can only have one fixed speed. However, speed is a very rough analogy for describing the motion in the fermion dimension. Much better for such a description fits the concept of spin. You remember that many particles have spin, that is, roughly speaking, spin, but the speed of this rotation can only take fixed values. An electron has a minimal non-zero spin. A photon has twice as much spin as the electron, but as we already know, the spin of the photon is always oriented in the direction of its movement. Graviton has twice as much spin than the photon. And that's all. There is not a fundamental particle, whose spin is more a spin of the graviton. If super symmetry is correct, then the Higgs boson is not moving in any of fermionic dimensions.

the Electron moves in a single, photon - fermion in two dimensions. As for the graviton, then all depends on how many fermionic dimensions has at his disposal. It may be, for example, that part of the spin of the graviton have to fermion measure, and the usual space-time. Fermion measure has one exclusive feature, which is expressed in the so-called prohibition principle. The prohibition principle was formulated in 1925 by Wolfgang Pauli, and he States that two fermions cannot be in the same quantum state. Electrons are fermions, so the two electrons in helium atom can not be on the same orbit in the same condition - they should at least have oppositely directed spins. Fermions is, by definition, are particles that obey the principle of prohibition.

the Particles do not obey the principle of prohibition, and this includes photons, gravitons, gluons and the Higgs boson, are called bosons. The behavior of the bosons is radically different from the behavior of fermions.

Bosons not only can coexist in the same quantum state, but more than that - I prefer to do it. Supersymmetry establishes a relationship of partnership between bosons and fermions. Each boson supersymmetry puts into the partnership of fermion, and Vice versa. For example, the Higgs boson as a supersymmetric partner fermion is called higgsino (sometimes called "thorn"). As if we no called, higgsino is nothing like the Higgs particle, moving in one of the fermionic dimensions.

the Key idea is that the fermion measure is a mathematical abstraction. They are nothing but the algebraic rules used to describe them. Supersymmetry is a symmetry between bosonic and hermionie measurements. What does it mean? Symmetry in a broad sense, is the immutability of something under certain transformations of something: for example, symmetry of a square means that when you rotate the square by 90°, we get exactly the same square. Bosonic dimensions are the usual dimensions like length and width. Six extra dimensions of string theory are bosonic dimensions, but we are now not interested. Fermion measurements are just an unusual set of algebraic rules.

Will by analogy with the rotation of the square to use the term "turn" and to supersymmetric transformation. The rotation of the bosonic measure in hermionee means that if the particle before the turn was moving in a bosonic dimension, then after turning it in it no longer moves and Vice versa, if you turn the particle was not moving in a bosonic dimension, then after the turn it starts to move. It is not clear? Well, let me try again. Physically, this means that if we take the boson, after turning in hermionee dimension he will be a fermion. Mathematically supersymmetric rotation of the bosonic measure in hermionee means to replace the number 1 denoting the bosonic dimension of one of the letters: a or b, which denote the fermion measure.

the Preservation of the immutability of the object in supersymmetric twist is that the resulting fermions will have the same mass and the same charge as the original boson. And that brings us to one of the most fundamental predictions of SUSY for every boson should exist a supersymmetric partner fermion with the same mass and charge, and Vice versa, for each fermion there must exist a boson supersymmetric him. One of the facts in which we believe, lies in the fact that the world is not perfectly supersymmetric. If in this world exist a boson with the same mass and charge as the electron, we would, of course, knew about it, because the existence of such a boson would change the structure of the atom. Perhaps there is some mechanism similar to the mechanism of condensation of tachyons violate> perime-trio. If the idea of the existence of this strange new symmetry makes you feel walking on quicksand, I'm not to blame. Like much of string theory, supersymmetry is the result of a long chain of speculative theorists and has no reliable experimental support.

If the hypothesis of supersymmetry and fermionic measurements are confirmed experimentally at the Large hadron Collider, it will be the triumph of pure reason - revenge for all the previous taunts of skeptics. However, it is possible that the right will be skeptics. Frankly, I would not be surprised by any outcome.

the Excerpt from the book Gubser S. "the Little book on big string theory"

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