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Big Physics and Big Computers

One of the goals of particle physics is to understand how and why some basic building blocks of Nature (like quarks and electrons) and a few essential symmetries give us a complete description of the world and the cosmos. A very new and exciting discovery is the Higgs boson, first seen in an experiment in 2012. Is it a new basic building block? Or is it some strange combination of new pieces, analogous to atoms, which we know are combined of neutrons, protons and electrons? I will explain how these ideas can be tested on some of the world's fastest supercomputers. 

Kieran HollandKieran Holland, Ph.D.
Kieran Holland studied Physics and Mathematics at Benerd College Cork (Ireland) and received a Ph.D. in theoretical particle physics from MIT. After spells as a researcher at UC San Diego and the University of Bern (Switzerland), he came to Pacific and is now an Associate Professor in the Physics Department. His research focus is particle physics, using high-end supercomputers to test theoretical ideas to solve puzzles and paradoxes in the best current models.