Probing Fundamental Theories with Large Underground Detectors

by Volodymyr Takhistov (UCLA)

Tuesday, 26 June 2018 from to (Europe/Vienna)
Baryon number is an accidental symmetry of the Standard Model. However, it is expected that at some scale baryon number violation should occur. Stability of the proton will then no longer be guaranteed. In fact, proton decay is a keystone prediction of Grand Unified Theories (GUTs) that unify the Standard Model gauge groups together and provide a natural explanation for the observed charge quantization as well as coupling unification. Large underground detectors are uniquely suited to search for such processes and can thus probe high energy scales associated with unification that are forever un-accessible to accelerators. I will review various searches for baryon number-violating processes at Super-Kamiokande, the state of the art large water Cherenkov experiment, including proton decays as well as other processes like neutron-antineutron oscillations and dinuceon decays. Upcoming large scale experiments will allow to further explore these venues.