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  1. Abstract

    Machine learning-based anomaly detection (AD) methods are promising tools for extending the coverage of searches for physics beyond the Standard Model (BSM). One class of AD methods that has received significant attention is resonant anomaly detection, where the BSM physics is assumed to be localized in at least one known variable. While there have been many methods proposed to identify such a BSM signal that make use of simulated or detected data in different ways, there has not yet been a study of the methods’ complementarity. To this end, we address two questions. First, in the absence of any signal, do different methods pick the same events as signal-like? If not, then we can significantly reduce the false-positive rate by comparing different methods on the same dataset. Second, if there is a signal, are different methods fully correlated? Even if their maximum performance is the same, since we do not know how much signal is present, it may be beneficial to combine approaches. Using the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) Olympics dataset, we provide quantitative answers to these questions. We find that there are significant gains possible by combining multiple methods, which will strengthen the search program at the LHC and beyond.

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  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  3. A bstract Discriminating between quark- and gluon-initiated jets has long been a central focus of jet substructure, leading to the introduction of numerous observables and calculations to high perturbative accuracy. At the same time, there have been many attempts to fully exploit the jet radiation pattern using tools from statistics and machine learning. We propose a new approach that combines a deep analytic understanding of jet substructure with the optimality promised by machine learning and statistics. After specifying an approximation to the full emission phase space, we show how to construct the optimal observable for a given classification task. This procedure is demonstrated for the case of quark and gluons jets, where we show how to systematically capture sub-eikonal corrections in the splitting functions, and prove that linear combinations of weighted multiplicity is the optimal observable. In addition to providing a new and powerful framework for systematically improving jet substructure observables, we demonstrate the performance of several quark versus gluon jet tagging observables in parton-level Monte Carlo simulations, and find that they perform at or near the level of a deep neural network classifier. Combined with the rapid recent progress in the development of higher order parton showers, we believe that our approach provides a basis for systematically exploiting subleading effects in jet substructure analyses at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) and beyond. 
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  4. An important class of techniques for resonant anomaly detection in high energy physics builds models that can distinguish between reference and target datasets, where only the latter has appreciable signal. Such techniques, including Classification Without Labels (CWOLA) and Simulation Assisted Likelihood-free Anomaly Detection (SALAD) rely on a single reference dataset. They cannot take advantage of commonly-available multiple datasets and thus cannot fully exploit available information. In this work, we propose generalizations of CWOLA and SALAD for settings where multiple reference datasets are available, building on weak supervision techniques. We demonstrate improved performance in a number of settings with real and synthetic data. As an added benefit, our generalizations enable us to provide finite-sample guarantees, improving on existing asymptotic analyses. 
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