<b>Department Colloquia</b><br>Tabletop Probes for TeV Physics: Searching for the Electric Dipole Moment of the Electron<br><b>Speaker: David DeMille (Yale University)</br></b>
Wednesday, February 22, 2012
340 West Hall
Speaker: David DeMille (Yale University)Time-reversal (T) symmetry is observed to be broken in K- and B-meson systems, in a manner consistent with the Standard Model (SM) of electroweak interactions. Violation of T-invariance makes it possible for elementary particles such as the electron to have an electric dipole moment (EDM) along their spin axis. Although the SM prediction for the electron EDM is unobservably small, most viable extensions to the SM predict EDMs within a few orders of magnitude of the current limits. A new class of tabletop-scale experiments is now poised to test these predictions. At the projected level of sensitivity, these experiments will effectively probe T-violating phenomena at the 100-1000 TeV scale, and could provide a key to understanding how matter came to dominate over antimatter in the universe. This talk will describe the basic concepts of the field, the experiments giving the current best limit on the electron EDM, and a new generation of experiments now underway.