October 2022 - ETP at the Science Days at Europa-Park

ETP @ Science Days

Particle physics is exciting - not only for physicists doing research in this field!
Researchers from CERN, the University of Freiburg, the Netzwerk Teilchenwelt, as well as staff and students of ETP were able to prove this once again on 20-22 October 2022. School classes and interested people of all ages were invited to the Science Days in Rust to learn in a sportish way about the operation of the Large Hadron Collider by playing "Proton Football" and medical applications of particle accelerators in the game "Heal". In conversations with researchers, the visitors were able to learn more about the fundamental building blocks of the universe, as well as the tools needed to study those. This year, two science shows explained in a simple yet fascinating way how detectors make invisible particles visible, and how the produced data is processed with computers.

The persistently large crowds at the CERN booth were testimony to the continuing high level of public interest in the fundamental research being conducted at the LHC experiments. Since the first collisions at the LHC in 2010 and the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012, the physics behind still knows how to fascinate.

July 26, 2022 - EFFEKTE evening lecture "Code of the Universe"

Beatrix von Puttkamer
Evening lecture with Prof. Dr. Felix Kahlhoefer, Dr. Belina von Krosigk and Prof. Dr. Torben Ferber (f.l.t.r)
Our universe is full of unsolved mysteries and wonders. Where is antimatter? What is this mysterious Dark Matter that, to our best and only knowledge, makes up a large part of the mass of our universe? And how do we use the world's largest particle accelerator at CERN in Switzerland and KEK in Japan to search for new elementary particles?
In the packed Triangle Open Space, Prof. Dr. Torben Ferber from ETP explained how matter is made to collide with antimatter in the laboratory and why there is only matter but (almost) no antimatter in our world. Dr. Belina von Krosigk from IAP took the audience on a journey to Dark Matter through our Milky Way and beyond. And Prof. Dr. Felix Kahlhoefer, physicist at TTP, gave insights into how new particles would reveal themselves in our particle accelerators and other experiments.

July 6, 2022 - ETP now official member of the LUXE experiment

D. Nölle / DESY
European XFEL tunnel

Prof. Dr. Torben Ferber, Prof. Dr. Markus Klute, and their reserach groups have officially joined the planned LUXE experiment at DESY. The collaboration board of LUXE has admitted ETP as one of its member institutions. With this step, the ETP expands its physics research program beyond the large collider experiments Belle II and CMS. LUXE (Laser Und XFEL Experiment) is a new experiment that is currently being developed at DESY and the European Free Electron Laser (XFEL) to study the strong-field regime of quantum electro dynamics (QED). In the collisions of electrons and an optical laser, a beam of high energy photons is produced. Researchers at ETP will use this photon beam to search for axion-like particles (ALPs). They are working on the design of the electromagnetic calorimeter and analysis methods to optimize the search.

July 5, 2022 - Start of Run 3 @ LHC

Jost von den Driesch
ETP members follow online the start of the LHC

After more than three years of optimization and maintenance, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN resumed its work on Tuesday, July 5, 2022. The acceleration of protons to a record energy of 13.6 TeV marked the starting point of Run 3.

After focusing and stabilizing the proton beam to a diameter smaller than the thickness of a human hair, the alignment along the beam axis took place until the first collisions and their measurement with the CMS experiment occurred under the cheers of the assembled institute members.

The ETP congratulates the LHC team on the successful start and looks forward to the analysis of the first data.

July 4, 2022 - Newest CMS publication about the Higgs boson with ETP contribution

Invariant mass of two tau leptons which decayed from a Higgs boson

Just in time for the 10th anniversary of the announcement of the discovery of the Higgs boson at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) on July the 4th 2022 the CMS Collaboration has published a comprehensive study of the properties of this unique particle in the journal Nature. The publication summarizes the current state of knowledge about the Higgs boson and relies on an analysis of the data that have been recorded during the years 2016 till 2018.

Young scientists at KIT have contributed to this important result. The decay of the Higgs boson into tau leptons has been investigated with significant contributions of a group of PhD students and students of the ETP. Dr. R. Wolf the leader of this working group notes: "This measurement provides the most accurate information about the coupling strength of the Higgs boson to fermions and thus matter particles, so far. For this measurement we have used state-of-the-art methods of machine learning and of statistical data analysis."

The figure shows the signal that is left by the Higgs boson decay in two tau leptons in the CMS detector after subtracting all other known processes with a comparable signature in the detector ("background processes"). In the figure the number of these decays is shown as a function of the relativistic invariant mass of the tau leptons, which should coincide with the mass of the Higgs boson of 125 GeV within the resolution of the detector for these decays.     


Juli 4, 2022 - ETP celebration of the 10th anniversary of the Higgs boson discovery

Panel discussion

The 10th anniversary of the announcement of the Higgs boson discovery on July 4th 2022 was also appropriately celebrated at KIT. In KIT's Gerthsen lecture hall an evening lecture for the interested public, was given by Prof. Markus Klute, followed by a panel discussion. The program was moderated by Martin Besinger from SWR. More than 200 people of different ages between young and old found their way into the lecture hall, among those also witnesses who made personal contributions to the Higgs boson discovery, above all Prof. Klute himself. The questions during the presentation and the panel discussion took place in a very comfortable atmosphere, which was evidence of the rich interest of the audience.

After the official part of the evening the ETP members gathered for a small get-together with barbeque between the buildings of the physics faculty. 

June 2022 - Workshop on 2S-modules @ ETP

Marius Neufeld / KIT
Group photo

How can you build a silicon particle detector that can withstand the harsh radiation environment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and at the same time give fast input to real-time data selection? This was the guiding question for a workshop on “2S modules” held at KIT from June 13 to 15, 2022. About 35 attendees from 12 different member institutes of the CMS collaboration in Europe, the Indian subcontinent, and North America came together to discuss the project status and learn from each other in hands-on sessions about the complex assembly procedure in the newly extended clean room at KIT. Workshop organizer Dr. Stefan Maier points out: ”If you build 2S modules, there are so many details to get right. This is true not just for the assembly itself but also for all organizatorial and logistical aspects. It was great to have everybody here in person after two years of COVID restrictions and exchange our ideas.” The 2S module workshop enjoyed financial support by KCETA, the KIT Center Elementary Particle and Astroparticle Physics.

The LHC and its experiments will undergo significant updates for high-luminosity phase (HL-LHC), starting in 2029. The CMS experiment at the LHC will replace its entire silicon tracking detector system. The outermost part of the system (seen from the collision point) will be equipped with about 7600 2S modules, to be built by an international consortium between 2023 and 2025. CMS project leader Prof. Ulrich Heintz from Brown University: “A well-defined and precise assembly of the silicon modules is a key element for the new CMS tracker. A workshop like this is the perfect occasion to gather all involved institutes to discuss and define how we finalize the prototyping phase to enter the production period well-prepared.”

June 2, 2022 - Torben Ferber and Markus Klute welcomed as new professors in Baden-Württemberg

Torben Ferber / KIT
Welcome reception
Theresia Bauer, minister for research in Baden-Württemberg, welcomed new professors in the Liederhalle in Stuttgart. Torben Ferber and Markus Klute from the ETP were amongst the new professors supported by KIT-VP Wanner. Ingolf Bauer from 3sat moderated the event and asked some tough questions. 

May 27, 2022 - Günterfest

Ulrich Husemann / KIT
Festive colloquium

The ETP celebrated the 60. (+1.) birthday of our colleague Prof. Günter Quast with a festive colloquium. Greetings from the Head of Division Prof. Dr. Marc Weber, Dean Prof. Dr. Jörg Schmalian and Prof. Dr. Thomas Müller and a speech by Prof. Dr. Christian Zeitnitz (Wuppertal) gave the event a festive setting and allowed for a deep insight into the scientific and also less scientific contributions of our colleague. Prof. Dr. Ronny Nawrodt (Stuttgart) reported on the physics of detecting gravitational waves before the event ended with a reception.

May 2022 - Humboldt Professorship: Top international researcher Markus Klute honoured

David Ausserhofer, Humboldt-Stiftung
Award-winning Humboldt Professor: The co-discoverer of the Higgs particle, Markus Klute (right), with the KIT Vice President for Teaching and Academic Affairs, Alexander Wanner at the Humboldt Foundation award ceremony.

Twenty-one top researchers, including particle physicist Markus Klute, who was brought to Germany by the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), have been awarded Germany's most highly endowed international research prize, the Alexander von Humboldt Professorship, in Berlin. Federal Research Minister Bettina Stark-Watzinger and Hans-Christian Pape, President of the Humboldt Foundation, presented the awards, which are endowed with up to five million euros, during a ceremony.

Markus Klute from the Institute for Experimental Particle Physics (ETP) at KIT previously worked at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the USA and played a central role with his team in the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) experiment at CERN and contributed significantly to the discovery of the Higgs particle.

Klute is involved in particle physics at the highest energies, both in the design, construction, and commissioning of particle detectors and in the analysis of the collected data. With him as Humboldt Professor, KIT intends to significantly expand its research at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), currently the world's most powerful particle accelerator at CERN. The goal is to enable even more precise measurements and further groundbreaking discoveries in the future. Markus Klute heads the CMS project at ETP, one of the largest university institutes involved in the international experiment.

May 15, 2022 - ETP @ Karlsruher Grat

Maximilian Horzela
ETP hiking group

On Sunday, May 15, a small group of ETP students, PhD students and staff met for a hike over the Karlsruher Grat in the Black Forest. Around 8:30 a.m., the train left for Öttenhöfen, from where the trail led to the Karlsruher Grat via the Edelfrauengrab waterfalls. After climbing the craggy rocks in the blazing sun, the hike continued in a large arc through the Black Forest back to Ottenhöfen. After a little refreshment and train ride back to Karlsruhe, we ended the evening at the Wolfsbräu.

The next hike is planned for the end of June.

May 14, 2022 - ETP @ Campus Day

KIT / Torben Ferber
Belle II via VR headset

On Saturday, May 14, 2022, prospective new students were invited to the first KIT “Campus Day”. Together with the physics department, the students’ representatives and the other physics institutes, ETP members have introduced the prospective students to teaching and research at KIT. Prof. Husemann gave a typical first-year lecture in experimental physics. Research highlights included VR headsets providing an immersive experience of electron-positron collisions at the Belle II experiment at KEK in Japan, shown by Prof. Ferber and his team, and ETP’s recently designed new poster series.  Prospective students could also take a virtual tour of the CMS experiment at CERN and learn how to catch cosmic muons with a coffee pot, as demonstrated by Prof. Quast and a KIT student ambassador.

May 2, 2022 - ETP Photoshooting

Markus Klute / KIT

The ETP used the KIT photo studio at the north campus to boost our science communication and webpages. Michael Hoch took the pictures and will prepare a poster for the institute.

April 2022 – ETP wins Dr. Michael Hoch

Michael Hoch / CERN
Dr. Michael Hoch in front of the CMS detector

The ETP was able to win Michael Hoch to boost science education and outreach activities. As a trained particle physicist, he is an internationally acclaimed science communicator. Michael Hoch is a creative innovator of novel ideas and concepts for promoting particle physics, physics, and science.

His work is widely recognized and he was awarded the European Physical Society Prize 2017 "for initiatives highlighting the conceptual and physical beauty of high-energy physics, and the inspirational qualities that are common to both Art and Science".

Among his achievements are the art@CMS program, he is founder of the ORIGIN network and initiator and curator of numerous exhibitions. The ORIGIN-CMS exhibition in Seoul is a recent example of his work and was featured in the CERN Bulletin.

April 2022 - ETP on CERN Tour

Markus Klute / KIT
Group picture

From April 7 to 9, interested students that participated in the particle physics course during the winter semester, together with dedicated teachers and curious high school students, visited the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) near Geneva. Organized by Prof. Markus Klute and Prof. Günter Quast, the participants were given guided tours of selected facilities such as the Computing Center or the Antiproton Decelerator during these three days. The highlight of the program was the visit to one of the largest experiments at CERN: the CMS detector, where the Higgs boson was detected in 2012 in combination with the ATLAS detector. With this excursion, the students, teachers and high school students gained an insight into one of the largest research facilities for particle physics in Europe.

PhD Fellowship for Isabel Haide

Isabel Haide (privat)

Particle Physicist Isabel Haide was awarded a PhD fellowship of the state of Baden-Württemberg (Landesgraduiertenförderung (LGF)) to support excellent young scientists – congratulations!

Isabel Haide will be working at the ETP in the working group of Prof. Torben Ferber. She will focus on real-time reconstruction of particles in the Belle II experiment using artificial intelligence, and searches for dark photons.

Isabel Haide is PhD student in KSETA, the graduate school associated with the KIT Center KCETA.

26. Nov. 2021 – Prof. Torben Ferber bei der Nacht der Wissenschaft

Nacht der Wissenschaft

In der Nacht vom 26. November 2021 fand wieder die "Nacht der Wissenschaft" statt. Bis in die frühen Morgenstunden waren viele spannende Vorträge aus den verschiedensten Fachbereichen als Livestream verfügbar.

Auch ein KCETA-Wissenschaftler, Prof. Torben Ferber, war dabei:

"Das Unsichtbare sichtbar machen: wie man nach dunkler Materie sucht
Spannend und zugleich sehr mysteriös: Der Großteil unseres Universums besteht aus dunkler Materie – einer Form von Materie die sich bislang nur indirekt durch ihre Schwerkraft bemerkbar macht. Forscher weltweit suchen mit Hochdruck nach einem Nachweis im Labor: Tief unter der Erde, im Weltall, oder an den größten Teilchenbeschleunigern der Welt. Was wir über dunkle Materie wissen und was wir nicht wissen und wie man Unsichtbare Dinge sichtbar macht – und was hat das alles mit Spülmittel und Eichhörnchen zu tun?"

October 2021 – Prof. Thomas Müller appointed KIT Distinguished Senior Fellow

Prof. Thomas Müller

We cordially congratulate Prof. Dr. Thomas Müller (ETP) on the award of the status KIT Distinguished Senior Fellow as of October 1, 2021. The KIT Executive Board has thus followed the recommendation of the Council of Researchers and Promotion of Young Scientists (CRYS) and the proposal of Head of Division V Prof. Dr. Marc Weber.

With this special award, KIT honors outstanding personalities from science in order to preserve their experience and knowledge for research, innovation, and young scientists or the education of students even after their retirement.

Thomas Müller will thus continue to pursue his scientific topics at KIT and continue his university teaching.

September 2021 – Ulrich Husemann re-elected to the DPG Council

KIT-ZAK Tanja Meißner
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Husemann

Congratulations to Prof. Ulrich Husemann (Institute of Experimental Particle Physics) who was re-elected to the DPG Council of the German Physics Society (DPG). The DPG is the world's largest physics society. As the representative of all DPG members, the Council decides on important changes and innovations in the DPG.

Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft (DPG)