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James Linnemann

Professor, Emeritus
High Energy Physics - Experimental
Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
567 Wilson Rd., Room 3245
(517) 884-5565



1978: Ph.D., Cornell University

Professional Activities & Interests / Biographical Information

I'm an experimenter in High Energy Physics and Astroparticle Physics. I am currently working on the HAWC experiment in Mexico at 13,500 feet altitude, measuring cosmic ray photons with TeV energies.

I often work on triggering (online selection of which events to analyze in detail) and was in charge of electronics during HAWC construction. I enjoy improving statistical techniques to get the most out of our data. In the ATLAS experiment at the CERN Large Hadron Collider (LHC), I’ve studied how to improve our triggering, including how best to use an electronics board built at MSU as part of an ATLAS upgrade in 2014. At the D0 Tevatron experiment at Fermilab near Chicago I’ve searched for supersymmetric particles. In HAWC, we built some custom electronics (thanks to our excellent electronics designers), and we are applying multivariate analysis techniques we’ve used at collider experiments to improve the energy measurement at HAWC. Our group previously found new objects in the sky emitting TeV gamma rays, and we are eagerly searching for more. We already are seeing interesting results from the recently commissioned HAWC detector. We are searching for black holes left over from the big bang which decay explosively via Hawking radiation. We recently found that these explosions might even reveal traces of supersymmetric particles out of the reach of the LHC. We also study the relationship between lower energy pulsar radiation (seen by the Fermi satellite) and the TeV radiation seen in the nebula and supernova remnants surrounding neutron stars.