One of the most famous theoretical physicist in the world, Lisa Randall, was yesterday in Milano for the Wired's Next Fest with a conference about Physics, technology and multidimensions. The physicist talked about LHC, the Standard Model and the Higgs boson and the connections between his research work.
The starting point is a light introduction about the scales in our universe: we known the cosmic and macroscopic scales, and the microscopic scale, and it is really important for us to understand what is the more appropriate scale in order to study a particular phenomenon. An beautiful example is the Eiffel Tower in Paris:
Using the appropriatescale in physics is a tool of great importance, first of all because for the missing ingredient for the so called Great Unification is the gravity, that acts at cosmic scale, while the other interactions, described in the Standard Model, act at microscopic or human scale. The unification is complicated by the successes of the SM: the precise description of the interaction between elementary particles, and the recent detection of the Higgs boson reinforce the position of the Model in modern physics and the picture of the world that descend from it. But the possibility of the existence of physics behind SM is leaded by any great unification scenario described by theoretical physics in the last decades. One of the many scenarios was mathematical build by Lisa Randall with Raman Sundrum: they supposed the existence of a multidimensional universe in which the gravity has a strength comparable with that of the other interactions, that go down exponentially when it comes from the higher dimensions to the 4th-dimension (the dimension of our universe).
The most interesting tool in the theory is the existence, in the model, of a gravitational resonance that could be detected in the LHC because its energy is about TeV, that it could be reach by the particle accelerator since it works at full power. In this way the Randall-Sundrum model is verifiable and probably it is also interesting for experimental and theoretical physicists(1).
The slideshow of the conference:
(1)Un po' di suggerimenti per approfondire: una presentazione del CMS sulla ricerca dei gravitoni di Randall-Sundrum (pdf); una sorta di review sul modello, di Maxime Gabella (pdf; quindi un articolo sulla gravità (pdf) e sulla fenomenologia (pdf) dell'universo multidimensionale di Randall e Sundrum.
Randall L. & Sundrum R. (1999). Large Mass Hierarchy from a Small Extra Dimension, Physical Review Letters, 83 (17) 3370-3373. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.83.3370 (arXiv)