"This project will study realizations and phenomenological signatures of Grand Unified Theories within String Theory. The idea that the Standard Model of particle physics originates from a Grand Unified Theory (GUT) where all the gauge interactions are unified is one of the most attractive propositions in modern theoretical physics. GUT theories are not generic in string theory which means that their realizations and resulting phenomenology are strongly constrained thereby making the existence of a GUT an ideal assumption from which to draw concrete predictions and postdictions from string theory. The objectives of the project are to address the phenomenological implications of the recently discovered F-theory GUTs with regards to flavour physics, neutrino physics, dark matter and supersymmetry breaking. In particular, within this constrained F-theory GUT framework, we will study key questions such as why the quark and lepton masses are hierarchical? Why there is little family mixing in the quark sector but large mixing in the neutrino sector? How is supersymmetry breaking communicated to the Standard Model and what are the resulting soft masses? These objectives have a clear direct link to current and future experiments. The realization of the proposed ambitious line of research relies on recent significant theoretical advances in the study of GUT theories within string theory: the so called F-theory GUTs. One of the many benefits of these constructions is that much of the relevant physics is localized in a small region within the extra dimensions which means that it can be studied without requiring knowledge of the full compactification manifold thereby bypassing significant technical difficulties and making a direct link to phenomenology realistically attainable. Indeed this breakthrough has already formed strong ties to phenomenology in the recent literature and is expected to form one of the most active areas of research within string theory."
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