Episode 3: Hunting for the top quark in the Large Hadron Collider


Stories from the grid © Eens van de Jongens, Creative Commons license CC By-NC-ND 3.0 for online distribution only.


The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is the world's largest and most complex experiment, at the cutting edge of High Energy Physics. Particle physicists use the LHC to study variations from the Standard Model and discover potential new laws of physics. The particle known as the top quark is a window to this weird and wonderful world.

The LHC produces enormous amounts of data, enough to fill piles of DVDs. Marcel Vreeswijk and Hurng-Chun Lee from NIKHEF explain how customised grid computing workflows are key to filtering and sieving the dataset down to a manageable size. Without these tools, it would be impossible to pick out the collision event that could hold the clues to top quark behaviour.