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New book

This book is a broad-based text intended to help the growing student body interested in topics such as gravitational effective theories, supersymmetric effective theories, applications of effective theory techniques to problems in condensed matter physics (superconductivity) and quantum chromodynamics (such as soft-collinear effective theory). It begins with a review of the use of symmetries to identify the relevant degrees of freedom in a problem, and then presents a variety of methods that can be used to solve physical problems. A detailed discussion of canonical examples of effective field theories with increasing complexity is then conducted. Special cases such as supersymmetry and lattice EFT are discussed, as well as recently-found applications to problems in gravitation and cosmology. An appendix includes various factoids from group theory and other topics that are used throughout the text, in an attempt to make the book self-contained.

Available at the CERN bookshop

This book provides a comprehensive overview of modern particle physics accessible to anyone with a true passion for wanting to know how the universe works. We are introduced to the known particles of the world we live in. An elegant explanation of quantum mechanics and relativity paves the way for an understanding of the laws that govern particle physics. These laws are put into action in the world of accelerators, colliders and detectors found at institutions such as CERN and Fermilab that are in the forefront of technical innovation. Real world and theory meet using Feynman diagrams to solve the problems of infinities and deduce the need for the Higgs boson. Facts and Mysteries in Elementary Particle Physics offers an incredible insight from an eyewitness and participant in some of the greatest discoveries in 20th century science. From Einstein's theory of relativity to the spectacular discovery of the Higgs particle, this book will fascinate and educate anyone interested in the world of quarks, leptons and gauge theories. This book also contains many thumbnail sketches of particle physics personalities, including contemporaries as seen through the eyes of the author. Illustrated with pictures, these candid sketches present rare, perceptive views of the characters that populate the field. The Chapter on Particle Theory, in a pre-publication, was termed "superbly lucid" by David Miller in Nature (Vol. 396, 17 Dec. 1998, p. 642).

CERN Courier Bookshelf
September 2018
New book

The Grant Writer's Handbook: How to Write a Research Proposal and Succeed provides useful and practical advice on all aspects of proposal writing, including developing proposal ideas, drafting the proposal, dealing with referees, and budgeting. The authors base their advice on many years of experience writing and reviewing proposals in many different countries at various levels of scientific maturity. The book describes the numerous kinds of awards available from funding agencies, in particular large collaborative grants involving a number of investigators, and addresses the practical impact of a grant, which is often required of proposals. In addition, information is provided about selection of reviewers and the mechanics of organizing a research grant competition to give the proposal writer the necessary background information. The book includes key comments from a number of experts and is essential reading for anyone writing a research grant proposal.The Grant Writer's Handbook's companion website, featuring regularly updated resources and helpful links, can be found at www.ifm.eng.cam.ac.uk/research/grant-writers-handbook/.

Available at the CERN bookshop

An introduction to the world of quarks and leptons, and of their interactions governed by fundamental symmetries of nature, as well as an introduction to the connection that exists between worlds of the infinitesimally small and the infinitely large. The book starts with a simple presentation of the theoretical framework, the so-called Standard Model, which evolved gradually since the 1960's. This is followed by its main experimental successes, and its weaknesses and incompleteness. We proceed then with the incredible story of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN — the largest purely scientific project ever realized. What follows is the discussion of the conception, design and construction of the detectors of size and complexity without precedent in scientific history. The book summarizes the main physics results obtained firstly during the initial phase of operation of the LHC, which culminated in the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012 (the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2013). This is followed by the results obtained in subsequent years up to 2016, consolidating and expanding these findings. These successes have undoubtedly made CERN the focal point, both of intellectual endeavor and technological innovation in this domain of science. In the last chapter, we describe some plans for LHC and the possible evolution of the field.

Available at the CERN bookshop

This book introduces particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology. Starting from an experimental perspective, it provides a unified view of these fields that reflects the very rapid advances being made. This new edition has a number of improvements and has been updated to describe the recent discovery of gravitational waves and astrophysical neutrinos, which started the new era of multimessenger astrophysics; it also includes new results on the Higgs particle. Astroparticle and particle physics share a common problem: we still don’t have a description of the main ingredients of the Universe from the point of view of its energy budget. Addressing these fascinating issues, and offering a balanced introduction to particle and astroparticle physics that requires only a basic understanding of quantum and classical physics, this book is a valuable resource, particularly for advanced undergraduate students and for those embarking on graduate courses. It includes exercises that offer readers practical insights. It can be used equally well as a self-study book, a reference and a textbook.

Available at the CERN bookshop

This book highlights the power and elegance of algebraic methods of solving problems in quantum mechanics. It shows that symmetries not only provide elegant solutions to problems that can be solved exactly, but also substantially simplify problems that must be solved approximately. Furthermore, the book provides an elementary exposition of quantum electrodynamics and its application to low-energy physics, along with a thorough analysis of the role of relativistic, magnetic, and quantum electrodynamic effects in atomic spectroscopy. Included are essential derivations made clear through detailed, transparent calculations. The book’s commitment to deriving advanced results with elementary techniques, as well as its inclusion of exercises will enamor it to advanced undergraduate and graduate students.

New ebook
Archival historical image

“The formation of the European Physical Society with such a wide membership is a further demonstration of the determination of scientists to collaborate as closely as possible in order to make their positive contribution to the strength of European cultural unity.”

 

So said Gilberto Bernardini in his inaugural address on 26 September 1968. But it all started with a friendly dinner party in Bologna three years earlier; read Bernardini’s 18 January 1966 letter to Leon Van Hove here.

 

More information about the history of EPS here

More about the inauguration ceremony here

This photo shows Bernardini enrolling as a member of EPS; see more photos of the inauguration ceremony here

Available at the CERN bookshop

This monograph presents a new perspective on the history of general relativity. It outlines the attempts to establish an institutional framework for the promotion of the field during the Cold War. Readers will learn the difficulties that key figures experienced and overcame during this period of global conflict. The author analyzes the subtle interconnections between scientific and political factors. He shows how politics shaped the evolution of general relativity, even though it is a field with no military applications. He also details how different scientists held quite different views about what “political” meant in their efforts to pursue international cooperation. The narrative examines the specific epistemic features of general relativity that helped create the first official, international scientific society. It answers: Why did relativity bring about this unique result? Was it simply the product of specific actions of particular actors having an illuminated view of international relations in the specific context of the Cold War? Or, was there something in the nature of the field that inspired the actors to pioneer new ways of international cooperation? The book will be of interest to historians of modern science, historians of international relations, and historians of institutions. It will also appeal to physicists and interested general readers.

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