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Laboratoire d'Annecy-le-Vieux de
Physique Théorique


LAPTh, an overview

LAPTh is a mixed research unit (UMR 5108) of the CNRS lapth-lapp(within the Institute of Physics, INP) and the Université de Savoie. It is  located in Annecy-le-Vieux, 5km from the centre of Annecy and about 40km from CERN and Geneva.  The activities of LAPTh are centred around three main areas of research:

  • phenomenology of particle physics,
  • astroparticles and cosmology,
  • mathematical physics in particular field and string theory and  aspects of symmetry. 


GDR Terascale in Annecy

gdrterascale oct2013

LAPP and LAPTh will host the GDR Terascale from 28 to 30 Oct 2013. The GDR Terascale is a working group involving French theorists and experimentalists working on High energy particle physics and astroparticles with a focus on Higgs, BSM, Dark Matter and Tools and Monte-Carlos needed to pursue such investigations. The Full programme is to be found here.


When non science journalists describe LAPTh

lepointsep2013 imgIn the 26 September 2013 issue of Le Point Magazine (no 2141), LAPTh (and LAPP) physicists are some modern version of Professor Tryphon Tournesol : absent minded, gazing at the stars and the mountains surrounding them while dreaming of dark matter and hunting the Higgs, unshaven nonchalantly walking in flip-flops....Yet this tribe of mostly foreign origin chaps is a dream team of Higgs hunters...


LAPTh in Sciences et Vie, Sept. 2013

setv sep2013 coverWith the front page announcing that now that the Higgs boson is found a New Physics was about to emerge, the magazine lists 9 revolutionary ideas to reinvent the World. While we may be at the dawn of a new era, referring to Pasquale Serpico of LAPTh who calls for the need of a new Einstein, not all 9 revolutionary ideas are so revolutionary and so new.


Yet, it is true that the discovery of the Higgs comes with an enigma. Many arguments pointed that such a fundamental Higgs ought to be accompanied by a host of new particles, one of these could be the candidate for dark matter. Moreover, gravity at the quantum level poses a fantastic challenge in need of …revolutionary ideas and a new paradigm.


Graspa 2013

graspa 2013
The Graduate School in Particle Physics and Astroparticles of Annecy-le-Vieux was held from 22 to 26 July 2013. The School is attended by students in physics from universities around the world in their 3rd or 4th year. Lecturers are members of LAPP and LAPTh. The 4-day lectures cover LHC Physics, Neutrinos, Heavy Flavours, dark matter and cosmic rays and gravitational waves. Apart from the lectures hands-on sessions are organised around the usage of computation tools. With the lectures being held in a research laboratory, the students benefit from discussions with all members of LAPP and LAPTh.graspa 2013 students

Link to the page of the school


Accademia Lincei award for Pasquale Serpico

Tlynxhe prestigious Alfredo di Braccio Prize for physics of the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei goes to our colleague Pasquale Serpico. This award recognises the work of a young Italian scientist. The creation of the Academy (Academy of the Lynx) dates back to 1603. Several illustruous scientists are associated with this institution, starting with Galileo. The Lynx academy counts among its members, Einstein, Fermi, Heisenberg, Planck and Pasteur.

The prize award ceremony will be held on June 21 at the Palazzo Corsini in Rome in the presence of the President of the Italian Republic, Giorgio Napolitano. Pasquale who has been recognised for his work in astrophysics shares the 2013 prize with F.M.D. Pellegrino (Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa) for his work on graphene.


Pasquale Serpico in Science&Vie


pict cosmic ray

The 1149 issue (June 2013) of the magazine Science & Vie devotes a special article to cosmic rays, these particles that travel through the galaxy and end up bombarding the earth. Our colleague Pasquale Serpico was one of two experts that was consulted for the write-up.

Since their discovery in 1912, the origin of these ionizing particles of very high energy has long remained a mystery. Much evidence has now accumulated to trace back their origin to the explosion of massive stars known as supernovae. The latest results from the Fermi space telescope seem to confirm this hypothesis.


Planck Results

 planck resultsCongratulations to the Planck Team and to our colleague Julien Lesgourgues for their remarkable study of the temperature fluctuations of the CMB. This study has now given us the oldest map of the Universe, going back 400,000 years after the Big Bang, a snapshot with exceptional detail that will remain a reference for cosmological analyses. We now have a very accurate reconstruction of the composition of the "cosmic soup" which, in combination with other cosmological observables, offers a remarkably simple and coherent framework within the "standard cosmological model" thus providing very interesting constraints on relevant aspects of particle physics such as the number and the mass of neutrinos.

This wealth of data also revealed a few anomalies. In the months and years ahead, we will learn from these analyses whether we should go beyond the standard cosmological model. Furthermore, other ongoing analyses of the data address the polarization of the radiation. This will improve the chances of detecting other phenomena such as the presence of a diffuse background of gravitational waves.


Pierre Salati in Pour la Science (Scientific American)


 The issue 426 (April 2013) of the magazine Pour la Science, the French edition of Scientific American, is devoted to a lengthy article on dark stars. It is written by Katherine Freese (University of Michigan, USA), Paolo Gondolo (University of Utah, USA) and our colleague Pierre Salati.

Several measurements in astrophysics and cosmology indicate the presence of a new type of matter, dark matter. Dark matter represents no less than 85% of the matter content of the Universe. The most plausible hypothesis is that dark matter consists of new, electrically neutral and weakly interacting particles.

Many theories describing physics beyond the standard model of particle physics incorporate dark matter candidates. Dark stars, that are,  oddly enough, brighter than a thousand suns, draw their energy from the annihilation of these dark matter candidates.


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