Experimental Particle Physics Research Group


The Sussex EPP group has undergone a bold and substantial strategic expansion in recent years and it now counts eleven permanent faculty members plus one Emeritus Professor. The group’s main source of funding is the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC), with additional support from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and from the European Research Council (ERC). Sussex EPP enjoys strong research links with members of the Sussex Theoretical Particle Physics group and with other partners in the SEPnet consortium.

Antonella De Santo has established and leads a fast-growing team working on the ATLAS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider (LHC). Lily Asquith, Alessandro Cerri, Fabrizio Salvatore and Iacopo Vivarelli are the other academics in ATLAS. All members of the Sussex team have a long-standing leadership in various different physics topics, from searches for supersymmetric signals in leptonic final states and third generation squarks, to searches for rare decays of the B-mesons, to studies of jet sub-structures for applications to the physics of the Higgs boson. They also hold key responsibilities in the ATLAS trigger system, including in view of future LHC and ATLAS upgrades.

Historically, the EPP group is world-renowned for its high-precision measurement of the neutron electric dipole moment (EDM). The EDM is uniquely sensitive to physics beyond the Standard Model, and the next-generation neutron EDM experiment is expected to extend current sensitivity by a further two orders of magnitude. Philip Harris, who is Head of Department and also spokesperson for the CryoEDM experiment, leads this effort at Sussex together with Clark Griffith, Mike Hardiman and Emeritus Professor Mike Pendlebury.

The EPP group also boasts a vibrant and expanding programme of neutrino physics. Sussex is one of the leading UK institutes involved in the SNO+ experiment, which seeks to determine whether the neutrino is its own antiparticle by searching for neutrino-less double-beta decays. Simon Peeters, who is also the EPP Group Leader, leads the SNO+ effort at Sussex, together with Lisa Falk and Jeff Hartnell. Additionally, Jeff Hartnell has recently been awarded substantial ERC funding to establish a new team at Sussex to work on the Fermilab-based NOvA neutrino oscillation experiment, and Simon Peeters is becoming involved in an emerging experimental programme for direct dark matter searches using low-background detectors.

In addition to faculty, Sussex EPP currently has seven postdocs and eleven graduate students, as well as three engineer/technician posts directly involved with the group, plus a physicist programmer and a system administrator. We have a number of well-equipped laboratories, and we enjoy good access to the University’s technical facilities, including shared technicians. Sussex EPP researchers have uncontended access to a dedicated Grid Tier-3 linux cluster. Under EPP’s leadership, Sussex has also recently become integral member of the SouthGrid Tier-2 grouping of Grid-enabled research institutions in the South of England.