The Higgs program

The search for the Higgs boson is one of the most important searches currently taking place at the Large Hadron Collider. The Higgs search is performed by observing all available decay channels. The Higgs was the last remaining particle from the Standard Model to be observed - with the discovery of a new 125 GeV mass particle at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) announced to great acclaim in 2012, after eluding the physicists around the world for decades. 
The LHC highlight of 2013 was the first evidence of a fermionic decay of the Higgs boson. CoEPP researchers played a decisive role in this area. 
Find out more (with video) 

Precision tests of the Standard Model

The Standard Model assumed its current form in the mid 1970s and has since achieved remarkable success through discoveries of the weak gauge bosons, the top quark, tau neutrino and the Higgs boson.
The CoEPP research tests the predictions for rates of SM processes or properties of known particles. Currently the measurements of SM processes at the LHC include the analysis framework, AIDA (“An Inclusive Dilepton Analysis”) and a dedicated differential measurement of the top-quark pair production cross-section. 
Find out more

Dark matter

There is compelling evidence for the existence of dark matter, an exotic substance which contributes most of the matter in the universe. While the identity and properties of dark matter particles are unknown, there is excellent reason to suspect that dark matter has a mass which lies at the TeV scale.
The most well studied dark matter candidates are weakly interactive massive particles (WIMPs), which were in thermal equilibrium with ordinary matter in the early universe. If the dark matter interacts with ordinary matter with an electroweak strength coupling, the early universe freeze-out process can naturally produce the correct dark matter relic abundance.
Find out more


The Standard Model describes all known particles and their interactions and explains a vast amount of experimental observation from all the known subatomic collisions to the microscopic workings of the universe. The Standard Model became complete with the discovery of the Higgs boson. However, the presence of the Higgs particle also creates a serious problem. 
According to the Standard Model, the mass of the Higgs boson is affected by physics that is separated from it by 15 orders of magnitude, thus creating a ‘naturalness’ problem.
Supersymmetry is an important theory in particle physics which is being pursued in the hope of explaining such theoretical dilemmas.
Find out more 

Research computing

The CoEPP Research Computing team delivers reliable computing resources to the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid (WLCG). Local computing resources for use by Australian CoEPP physicists have been significantly enhanced, primarily through the deployment of virtual resources in the Australian Nectar Research Cloud and on the Research Data Storage Infrastructure (RDSI).
Research Computing continues to engage with the physics researchers to ensure that their computing needs are being met by the services being provided and that they are aware of the resources available to them on all of CoEPP's computing platforms, be it physical hardware, grid sites or in the cloud.
Find out more (with video)

New particles and exotica

Exotic physics looks at particles and phenomena that lie outside the Standard Model and beyond Supersymmetry. Exotic physics defies expectation and can be considered research into physics beyond the Standard Model that is not included in Supersymmetry. CoEPP concentrates on three specific areas of exotic physics, these include searches for new physics in multilepton final states, new heavy bosons and the search for and measurement of exotic Onia states.
The Adelaide and Melbourne groups are involved in analysis searches that can provide evidence for new phenomena. The production of multilepton events has been predicted by many models such as excited neutrino models, fourth-generation quark models and Supersymmetry models. The Adelaide group is involved in the physics analysis with collaboration of colleagues in The Netherlands and USA. 
Find out more

Origin of neutrino mass

Neutrinos are elementary particles that play a unique role in our understanding of fundamental interactions. They interact extremely weakly, are either very long-lived or stable, and have very small masses compared to other particles such as electrons and quarks. It is the issue of neutrino mass that motivates this research project.
Some of the proposed mechanisms for neutrino mass generation can be tested at the LHC. The goals of this project are to study theoretical models for neutrino mass that motivate the existence of new physics at the LHC, and to use LHC data to search for the predicted new particles and interactions.
Find out more


Experiments in the ATLAS detector. Photo: CERN