Quarkonium, the bound state of a heavy quark pair, is central to many aspects of particle and nuclear physics. Like the hydrogen atom in quantum mechanics, the discovery of the first quarkonium J/psi was the first tangible observation that quarks are physical particles. It provided the first direct evidence of the strong interaction theory in the subatomic world -- quantum chromodynamics (QCD). It is nowadays also understood that quarkonium analogues are important in the new physics search programme at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN and in the worldwide dark matter hunt. Quarkonium is also a powerful probe to conduct rich physics studies. Consequently, quarkonium has been measured by almost all experiments. Despite its importance, the quarkonium production mechanism in QCD remains to be understood, which places the theoretical interpretations of quarkonium data on shaky ground. The necessary ingredient to resolve the issues is to radically improve the quality and the precision of theoretical predictions. The primary goals of BOSON are to advance quarkonium studies with three objectives: 1. Pinning down the quarkonium production mechanism; 2. Advancing the precision of theoretical predictions; 3. Extracting maximal physics information from quarkonium data. To achieve them, BOSON will follow three routes: 1) the creation of an automated tool at next-to-leading order for any process involving quarkonia and elementary point particles with interfacing to general-purpose Monte Carlo event generators; 2) next-to-next-to-leading order cross section calculations for inclusive quarkonium processes; 3) phenomenological applications to particle, nuclear, and heavy-ion physics. BOSON outlines a challenging but feasible programme to advance our knowledge of the field, with positive impacts not only on the LHC community, but also on physicists working with facilities like RHIC at BNL, Belle2 at KEK, SPS at CERN and future high-energy experiments (e.g. EIC and FCC).
Fields of science
- natural sciencesphysical sciencestheoretical physicsparticle physicsparticle accelerator
- natural sciencesphysical sciencesquantum physics
- natural sciencesphysical sciencesnuclear physics
- natural sciencesphysical sciencesastronomyastrophysicsdark matter
- natural sciencesphysical sciencestheoretical physicsparticle physicsquarks
- HORIZON.1.1 - European Research Council (ERC) Main Programme