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The search for a dark vector boson and a new scalar with the ATLAS detector

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dc.contributor.advisor Leeuw, Lerothodi L.
dc.contributor.advisor Connell, S. H. (Simon H.)
dc.contributor.advisor Assamagan, Ketevi
dc.contributor.advisor Truong, Loan Boye, Diallo 2020-10-07T05:51:38Z 2020-10-07T05:51:38Z 2020-06
dc.description.abstract Hidden sector or dark sector states appear in many extensions to the Standard Model (SM), to provide particle mediators for dark matter in the universe or to explain astrophysical observations such as the positron excess in the cosmic microwave background radiation flux. A hidden or dark sector can be introduced with an additional U(1)d dark gauge symmetry. The discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012 during Run 1 by the Large Hadron Collider (ATLAS and CMS) opens a new and rich experimental program for Beyond Standard Model physics (BSM) based on the Higgs Portal. This exotic discovery route uses couplings to the dark sector at the Higgs level, which were not experimentally accessible before. This thesis presents the searches of possible exotic decays: H → ZdZ(d) → 4` where Zd is a dark vector boson. It had been initiated in the Run 1 period of the LHC using the ATLAS detector at CERN. The results showed (tantalizingly) two signal events where none were expected, so that in the strict criteria of High Energy Physics, the result was not yet statistically significant. The Run 1 analysis for a 8 TeV collision energy is further developed in Run 2 with a 13 TeV collision energy, to expand the search area, take advantage of higher statistics, a higher Higgs production cross section, and substantially better performance of the ATLAS detector. In this work, the search is further broadened and includes allowing the mass of the originating boson (the dark Higgs S) to vary from the SM value. This allows the search for the dark vector boson to also explore higher or lighter masses than the SM Higgs boson. This extended search is efficient and could include a more general class of models, with the mass constraint of the SM Higgs portal lifted. This thesis reviews the analysis results from Run 1 and Run 2, and presents its iteration in the full Run 2 search by focusing on its new channel where the additional scalar S (with mS 6= mH) decays to 4` via two dark vector boson states Zd . The case where the Higgs decays to 4` via two Zd (H → ZdZd → 4`) and also called high mass channel, has been just unblinded. Nineteen data events are observed where 14 were predicted. In overall, the data are consistent with the Monte Carlo prediction. No evidence of deviation from the Standard Model expectations are observed. en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (xxvii, 158 leaves) ; color illustrations, color graphs en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.title The search for a dark vector boson and a new scalar with the ATLAS detector en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.description.department College of Engineering, Science and Technology en Ph. D. (Physics) en

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