Search for Higgs boson pair production in the bbtautau decay channel with the CMS detector at the LHC

Abstract : This thesis describes a search for Higgs boson pair (HH) production using proton-proton collision data collected at sqrt(s) = 13 TeV with the CMS experiment at the CERN LHC. Events with one Higgs boson decaying into two bottom quarks and the other decaying into two tau leptons (HH -> bb tau+tau-) are explored to investigate both resonant and nonresonant production mechanisms. The measurement of HH production is experimentally challenging because of the tiny cross section predicted by the standard model of particle physics (SM). However, this process can reveal invaluable information on the nature of electroweak symmetry breaking by giving access to the Higgs boson trilinear self-coupling and, consequently, to the shape of the scalar potential itself. Moreover, HH production is sensitive to the presence of physics beyond the SM. Both the presence of new states decaying to HH and of anomalous Higgs boson couplings are investigated in this work.Tau leptons have a key role in this search and considerable effort has been devoted to ensure a high efficiency in their selection by the trigger system of the CMS experiment. In particular, the CMS Level-1 (L1) trigger was upgraded to face the increase in the centre-of-mass energy and instantaneous luminosity conditions expected for the LHC Run II operations. The upgrade opened up the possibility to develop an efficient and dedicated algorithm to reconstruct tau leptons decaying to hadrons (tauh) and a neutrino.The tau algorithm implements a sophisticated dynamic energy clustering technique and dedicated background rejection criteria. Its development, optimisation, implementation, and commissioning for the LHC restart are presented. The algorithm performance is initially demonstrated using a simulation and subsequently measured with the data collected with the CMS experiment. The excellent performance achieved is an essential element of the search for HH production.The investigation of the HH -> bb tau+tau- process explores the three decay modes of the tau+tau- system with at least one tauh object in the final state. A dedicated event selection and categorisation is developed and optimised to enhance the sensitivity, and multivariate techniques are applied for the first time to these final states to separate the signal from the background.Results are derived using an integrated luminosity of 35.9 fb-1. They are found to be consistent, within uncertainties, with the SM background predictions. Upper limits on resonant production are set and interpreted in the context of the minimal supersymmetric standard model. Upper limits on nonresonant production constrain the parameter space for anomalous Higgs boson couplings. The observed and expected upper limit are about 30 and 25 times the SM prediction, respectively, corresponding to one of the most stringent limits set so far at the LHC.Finally, prospects for future measurements of HH production at the LHC are evaluated by extrapolating the current results to an integrated luminosity of 3000 fb-1 under different detector and analysis performance scenarios.
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  • HAL Id : tel-01686016, version 1

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Luca Cadamuro. Search for Higgs boson pair production in the bbtautau decay channel with the CMS detector at the LHC. High Energy Physics - Experiment [hep-ex]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017SACLX059⟩. ⟨tel-01686016⟩

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