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December 12, 2003

Flashback

Hitoshi Murayama was in town this week, and gave a talk about some decidedly nonstandard alternatives to the Higgs content of the MSSM. For those too young to remember the early '80s, nothing can fully evoke the horror of hearing the phrase “walking technicolour” again.

But the supersymmetric Fat Higgs model is not your father’s extended technicolour model, as it borrows rather heavily from the work of Seiberg and others on strongly-coupled SUSY gauge dynamics. The motivation, nowadays, is rather different, too. Rather than trying to eschew fundamental scalars (which are implied by supersymmetry anyway), or to provide a solution to the hierarchy problem (why is the Higgs so light?), the idea is to permit the Higgs to be heavier than the constraints of the MSSM would naturally allow.

Posted by distler at December 12, 2003 1:39 AM

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Re: Flashback

The tendency for silly names hasn’t gone away, though.

“Fat branes” have also been invoked recently, although they have nothing in common with “fat Higgses”. We also had “the littlest Higgs”… Peter Higgs must be wondering whether he should go on a diet or the reverse.

Murayama and coauthors also coin the name “supersymmetric little hierarchy problem” - which of course their model solves. (Known to the rest of us as the fine-tuning problem in supersymmetry.) Inventing and solving a problem in one and the same paper certainly makes it sound more impressive.

There is a similar-sounding proposal in in “The standard model partly supersymmetric” of Gherghetta and Pomarol: the Higgs as bound state of a nearly-CFT. But maybe that doesn’t do so well with the fine-tuned electroweak scale.

Posted by: Thomas Dent on December 12, 2003 8:53 AM | Permalink | Reply to this

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