Research objectives and content
The observation of ultrahigh energy cosmic ray (UHECR) events with energy above the Greisen-Zatsepin-Kuzmin- Cutoff at 50 EeV is one of the greatest puzzles of contemporary astrophysics. Main goal of this research project is the Development and investigation of new particle physics explanations for these events. As production mechanism for the UHECRs we propose the decay of supermassive X-particles. They can be either relic particles of the Big Bang or can be emitted by topological defects which are formed during the the symmetry breaking of a grand unified theory (GUT). In the frame work of supersymmetric GUTs also supersymmetric particles will be produced in the particle cascade initiated by the decay of the X-particles. To check the hypothesis that supersymmetric particles constitute partially the UHECRs in extensive air shower experiments, the differential flux of the potential UHECR particles as well as their cross-sections with matter will be calculated. In a second, unconnected part of this research project neutrino properties in dense matter and strong magnetic fields will be examined. In particular, we shall try to develop a convincing model to explain the observed velocities of pulsars.
Training content (objective, benefit and expected impact)
The experience of the Valencia group in specific calculations and the use of Monte-Carlo simulations for supersymmetric models will be very helpful for me in the first part of the project. In the second part, the combination of my experience in quantum field theory with external magnetic fields together with the experience of the Valencia group in neutrino physcis will provide mutual benefit.
Links with industry / industrial relevance (22)