Beyond Higgs: on Supersymmetry (or Lack Thereof)
With the search for the Higgs boson, the last missing piece of the Standard Model of particle physics, apparently reaching its long-anticipated-and-finally-successful conclusion, anticipation of the next set of discoveries is growing.
Recently the Stanford campus hosted a smallish gathering celebrating the 60th birthday of Savas Dimopoulos, justly acclaimed by each of the attendees as the (or at least one of the few) most insightful particle physics model builders of the last 30 years. Now you’d think that the leading topic of discussion at such an event would be the details of the ongoing Higgs search – has it or hasn’t it been discovered? Surprisingly this was all considered old news. Repeatedly, the theorists joked that, with the exception of the actual CERN experimentalists present, all of us know that the Higgs has now been discovered with a mass of 125 GeV/c2. (It hasn’t, quite, but the hints are strong.) The message was clear: “We’ve known for decades that the Higgs is going to be found. So break open the champagne and get the celebrating over with, because what we really want to know is — which is the correct version of Beyond the Standard Model physics?”