Beauty 2014

Researchers from the School's experimental particle physics group recently organised the 15th International Conference on B-Physics at Frontier Machines (Beauty 2014)

The event was held at the Playfair Library at the University of Edinburgh and supported by the Higgs Centre. The Beauty 2014 conference reviewed results in the field of B-physics and CP-violation, and explored the physics potential of existing and upcoming B-physics experiments at new particle accelerator facilities. The CERN-based LHCb experiment (which comprises a strong Edinburgh group) presented its latest results on the observation of a spin-3 meson, the first time such an object has been observed.

A live video link-up with CERN took place on Thursday, with a dedicated discussion about the physics results being presented in Edinburgh. This gave the general public a chance to hear directly from the scientists making the measurements and to ask them questions. You can watch an online recording of the broadcast.

"Two main results were presented, both from the LHCb experiment that we work on in Edinburgh. The first was the first observation of a heavy flavored spin-3 particle, observed in the decay of a B_s meson. In quantum mechanics, spin is an intrinsic form of angular momentum carried by the particle, just like all particles also have a mass. This is the first time that any spin-3 particle has been seen to be produced in B meson decays and shows the power of the LHCb data to perform spectroscopy of heavy flavoured mesons." Dr Greig CowanParticle Physics Experiment group.

Confirmation of an exotic resonance composed of 4 quarks was also presented at the conference.

In addition to the LHCb results, the ATLAS, CMS, Belle, BaBar, CDF and D0 experiments also showed their latest measurements, demonstrating the great strength in the field as we work together to understand the fundamental theories of the Universe. Theoretical physicists helped to shed further light on recent interesting and unexpected results by showing how possible new physics theories could accommodate these anomalies. In addition, local PhD students were given the chance to present their own work during a poster session.

“I really enjoyed the conference as it allowed me to get a good overview of many different aspects of my subject. Getting the chance to present my own research to the community, in the form of a poster and short presentation, was excellent experience for thinking about how best to communicate my thesis subject. This will be very useful in the future!" Adam Morris, PhD student, Particle Physics Experiment group

The conference not only allowed the scientists to discuss the latest results, but also gave them the opportunity to socialise together and get to explore Edinburgh, Scottish culture (including whisky) and the surrounding area. You can see the Twitter posts and photos taken during the week here:

"Beauty 2014 was a huge success with lots of new results presented. We have received lots of very positive feedback from participants who enjoyed very much the conference which took place in the historic Playfair Library. This venue allowed for easy interactions between scientists with lots of excellent discussion after talks, but also during coffee and lunches. " Prof. Franz MuheimParticle Physics Experiment group, who chaired the local organising committee.

About LHCb

LHCb is an experiment set up to explore what happened after the Big Bang that allowed matter to survive and build the Universe we inhabit today

Fourteen billion years ago, the Universe began with a bang. Crammed within an infinitely small space, energy coalesced to form equal quantities of matter and antimatter. But as the Universe cooled and expanded, its composition changed. Just one second after the Big Bang, antimatter had all but disappeared, leaving matter to form everything that we see around us — from the stars and galaxies, to the Earth and all life that it supports.

The conference ran from 14th‑18th July 2014 at the Playfair Library in Edinburgh.