750 GeV diphoton excess

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Possible production and decay mechanism of the digamma resonance at LHC.
Composition Elementary particle
Statistics suspected bosonic
Status Refuted; absent in August 2016 data[1][2]


Ϝ(750),[4] ϕ,[5] X,[6] ηzy[7]
Discovered Resonance of mass ≈750 GeV decaying into two photons could have been seen by CERN in 2015[8][9] (though sufficient statistical significance never reached)
Mass ≈ 750 GeV/c2 (CMS + ATLAS)[8][9]
Decay width < 50 GeV/c2[8][9]
Decays into

The 750 GeV diphoton excess in particle physics was an anomaly in data collected at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in 2015, which could have been an indication of a new particle or resonance.[8][9] The anomaly was absent in data collected in 2016, suggesting that the diphoton excess was a statistical fluctuation.[1][2] In the interval between the December 2015 and August 2016 results, the anomaly generated considerable interest in the scientific community, including about 500 theoretical studies.[10] The hypothetical particle was denoted by the Greek letter Ϝ (pronounced digamma) in the scientific literature, owing to the decay channel in which the anomaly occurred.[3] The data, however, were always less than five standard deviations (sigma) different from that expected if there was no new particle, and, as such, the anomaly never reached the accepted level of statistical significance required to announce a discovery in particle physics.[11] After the August 2016 results, interest in the anomaly sank as it was considered a statistical fluctuation.[12]

December 2015 data[edit]

On December 15, 2015, the ATLAS and CMS collaborations at CERN presented results from the second operational run of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at the center of mass energy of 13 TeV, the highest ever achieved in proton-proton collisions. Among the results, the invariant mass distribution of pairs of high-energy photons produced in the collisions showed an excess of events compared to the Standard Model prediction at around 750 GeV/c2. The statistical significance of the deviation was reported to be 3.9 and 3.4 standard deviations (locally) respectively for each experiment.

The excess could have been explained by the production of a new particle (the digamma) with a mass of about 750 GeV/c2 that decayed into two photons. The cross-section at 13 TeV centre of mass energy required to explain the excess, multiplied by the branching fraction into two photons, was estimated to be


This result, while unexpected, was compatible with previous experiments, and in particular with the LHC measurements at a lower centre of mass energy of 8 TeV.

August 2016 data[edit]

Analysis of a larger sample of data, collected by ATLAS and CMS in the first half 2016, did not confirm the existence of the Ϝ particle, which indicates that the excess seen in 2015 was a statistical fluctuation.[1][2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "Search for resonant production of high mass photon pairs using 12.9 fb−1 of proton-proton collisions at √s = 13 TeV and combined interpretation of searches at 8 and 13 TeV". 
  2. ^ a b c d "Search for scalar diphoton resonances with 15.4 fb−1 of data collected at √s = 13 TeV in 2015 and 2016 with the ATLAS detector". 
  3. ^ a b Strumia, A. (2016). "Interpreting the 750 GeV digamma excess: A review". arXiv:1605.09401Freely accessible [hep-ph]. 
  4. ^ Franceschini, R.; et al. (2016). "Digamma, what next?". Journal of High Energy Physics. 2016 (7): 150. arXiv:1604.06446Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016JHEP...07..150F. doi:10.1007/JHEP07(2016)150Freely accessible. 
  5. ^ Nakai, Y.; Sato, R.; Tobioka, K. (2016). "Footprints of New Strong Dynamics via Anomaly and the 750 GeV Diphoton". Physical Review Letters. 116 (15): 151802. arXiv:1512.04924Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016PhRvL.116o1802N. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.151802. PMID 27127957. 
  6. ^ Dutta, B.; et al. (2016). "Interpretation of the diphoton excess at CMS and ATLAS". Physical Review D. 93 (5): 055032. arXiv:1512.05439Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016PhRvD..93e5032D. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.93.055032. 
  7. ^ Zhang, Y.-J.; Zhou, B.-B.; Sun, J.-J. (2016). "The Fourth Generation Quark and the 750 GeV Diphoton Excess". arXiv:1602.05539Freely accessible [hep-ph]. 
  8. ^ a b c d e Aaboud, M.; et al. (ATLAS Collaboration) (2016). "Search for resonances in diphoton events at √s = 13 TeV with the ATLAS detector". Journal of High Energy Physics. 2016 (9): 1. arXiv:1606.03833Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016JHEP...09..001A. doi:10.1007/JHEP09(2016)001Freely accessible. 
  9. ^ a b c d e Sirunyan, A. M.; et al. (CMS Collaboration) (2016). "Search for resonant production of high-mass photon pairs in proton-proton collisions at √s = 8 and 13 TeV". Physical Review Letters. 117 (5): 051802. arXiv:1606.04093Freely accessible. Bibcode:2016PhRvL.117e1802K. doi:10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.051802. PMID 27517765. 
  10. ^ "#Run2Seminar and subsequent γγ-related arXiv submissions". jsfiddle.net. Retrieved 2016-08-11. 
  11. ^ Lyons, L. (2013). "Discovering the Significance of 5 sigma". arXiv:1310.1284Freely accessible [physics.data-an]. 
  12. ^ Coldham, K. (2016-08-05). "Chicago sees floods of LHC data and new results at ICHEP". CERN Document Server. Retrieved 26 January 2017.