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Project overview

Particle physics is the study of the fundamental building blocks of nature, how they interact and how they lead to what we observe from the smallest scales to the largest. The Standard Model (SM), which is built on quantum field theory (QFT), is an impressively accurate description of all data to date, from colliders to astronomical observations. Nevertheless, there are many aspects we do not understand from the pattern of particle masses to our lack of a quantum theory of gravity.

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will accumulate ever-increasing amounts of data over the next decade; it famously discovered the Higgs particle in 2012 and could possibly discover new physics beyond the SM. So far the only experimental evidence for such new physics is neutrino mass & mixing, which may yet shed light on the pattern of particle masses, strength of the four forces, and observations of abundance of matter over anti-matter in the universe, dark matter and dark energy. Upcoming experiments will address these questions. We have close links to the LHC through the NExT institute and will help experimenters discover new physics, by devising strategies for searches and interpreting the data, for example through our easy-to-use interface (HEPMDB) to supercomputers and the definition of new triggers (to be implemented in the current LHC upgrade) for physics previously overlooked. A common thread is the violation of the combination of charge conjugation symmetry (C) and parity (P), which may be observed soon in new sectors leading to major breakthroughs. In order to be sure that we have found new physics we must exclude subtle effects from the SM, or deduce it indirectly from small deviations from the SM. The strong nuclear force (QCD) can make this difficult, but we have outstanding expertise in computing these effects using state-of-the-art supercomputers and have now reached a level of precision where we must include effects of electromagnetism (QED) and differences in the masses of the quarks.

It is important to continue to develop QFT, e.g. new tightly constrained theories have been found that become massless, at long or short distances. We use these to make better predictions of particle scattering and to better understand theories when mass is re-introduced or to work towards quantum gravity. The notion of "holography" has linked apparently very different systems such as QCD and Black Holes. We are developing it to learn more about a quantum gravity, and use gravity to study QCD including in extreme environments such as the cores of neutron stars. We are extending lattice field theory simulations to study gravity and cosmology (early-universe physics), including testing holographic models.


Lead researcher

Professor Tim Morris LRAM FHEA FInstP

Professor of Physics & Astronomy
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Other researchers

Professor Elena Accomando


Research interests

  • Theory and Phenomenology of Particle Physics at colliders, within the Standard Model and beyond.
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Emeritus Professor Christopher Sachrajda FRS, FInstP, CPhys, PhD

Research interests

  • Developing Quantum Chromodynamics (QCD), the quantum field theory of the strong-nuclear force and implementing it studies of particle physics phenomenology. 
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Emeritus Professor Stephen King FInstP, CPhys, PhD

Research interests

  • The Flavour Problem and Neutrino Physics
  • Interface of Cosmology with Particle Physics
  • Beyond the Standard Model
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Professor Nicholas Evans

Professor of Particle Physics

Research interests

  • Strongly Coupled Gauge Theories including QCD and composite Higgs models
  • Holographic Descriptions of Gauge Theories
  • The origin of mass
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Professor Andreas Juttner

Professor of Theoretical Physics
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Dr Carlos Mafra

Principal Research Fellow

Research interests

  • Covariant quantization of the superstring
  • Pure spinor formalism
  • Superstring scattering amplitudes
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Professor James Drummond


Research interests

  • Quantum field theory, string theory, scattering amplitudes, integrable systems, holography, areas of mathematics related to quantum field theory
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Professor Oscar Dias


Research interests

  • Einstein's gravity
  • Black holes
  • Holographic dualities (gravity/gauge theory dualities)
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Dr David Turton

Principal Research Fellow

Research interests

  • String theory
  • Black holes
  • Holography
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Professor Stefano Moretti PhD, FilDrHC


Research interests

  • His research interests include: Standard Model (QCD and EW Interactions), Supersymmetry, Non-minimal Higgs Models, Higher Order Corrections and Monte Carlo Event Generators.
  • Prof Moretti’s scientific activity is in particle phenomenology, particularly in the area of collider physics. His contribution to particle physics is substantial as seen from more than 500 scientific papers/articles that he has published. (Please ignore the metrics provided by PlumX or else on these pages as they are completely wrong for my field of specialisation, always refer to iNSPIRE ones.)
  • Prof Moretti is also author of two textbooks, S. Khalil and S. Moretti, `Supersymmetry Beyond Minimality: from Theory to Experiment' and 'SM Phenomenology', both with CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group. 
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Professor Alexander Belyaev

Professor of Physics

Research interests

  • Theory and phenomenology of elementary particle physics and cosmology beyond the standard model
  • Supersymmetry, extra-dimensions and technicolor and their Dark Matter cosmological connections
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Professor Pasquale Di Bari

Professor of Physics And Astronomy

Research interests

  • Particle Cosmology and Neutrino Physics:
  • BSM physics, grand-unified models, flavour models
  • Seesaw models and phenomenology
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Dr Andrew Akeroyd

Principal Teaching Fellow
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Professor Kostas Skenderis

Chair in Mathematical Physics
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Dr Benjamin Withers

Principal Research Fellow

Research interests

  • Gravity
  • Holography
  • String theory
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Dr Ines Aniceto

Senior Research Fellow

Research interests

  • 1. Perturbation theory and asymptotic analysis of N=non-perturbative phenomena in AdS/CFT
  • 2. Exponential Asymptotics and resurgence in non-linear ODEs and discrete equations
  • 3.  Exact quantisation methods for field theoretic observables
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Collaborating research institutes, centres and groups

Research outputs

Adam Witold Bzowski, Paul McFadden & Kostas Skenderis, 2022, Journal of High Energy Physics, 2022(12)
Type: article
Alexandre Serantes & Benjamin Withers, 2022, Classical and Quantum Gravity, 39(24)
Type: article
Bowen Fu, Stephen F. King, Luca Marsili, Silvia Pascoli, Jessica Turner & Ye-Ling Zhou, 2022, Journal of High Energy Physics, 2022(11)
Type: article