Electroweak Phase Transition, Scalar Dark Matter, and the LHC

Michael Ramsey-Musolf, University of Wisconsin-Madison
3:30 PM, Nov. 13, Duke U.

With the observation of a ~125 GeV boson at the Large Hadron Collider, the role of scalar fields in the early universe is taking on heightened interest. In this talk, I focus on two questions in cosmology for which scalar fields may provide answers: Was there a first order phase transition during the electroweak symmetry-breaking era, as would be required for successful electroweak baryogenesis? And what is the nature of the non-baryonic dark matter? I discuss how new scalar fields might address both of these questions, present our recent work on related theoretical and phenomenological issues, and highlight a few of the signatures one might observe at the Large Hadron Collider. I argue that the observation of new scalars that address these questions in cosmology might provide additional rationale for considering the role of the scalar fields more generally in the early universe.