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Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology Logo

Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology

Durham University Logo Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology Logo

Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology


Email: frank.krauss[AT]durham.ac.uk

Brief Curriculum Vitae

  • since 2006: at IPPP Durham
  • 2003-2006: Junior Professor at TU Dresden
  • 2002-2003: Postdoc at CERN
  • 2000-2001: Postdoc at Cavendish Lab, Cambridge, UK
  • 1999-2000: Postdoc at Technion, Haifa, Israel
  • 1994-1998: PhD student at TU Dresden, supervised by Gerhard Soff
  • 1988-1994: Undergraduate studies at TH Darmstadt.
    Diploma thesis supervised by Thomas Mannel and Thorsten Ohl


Here's my listing from Spires.

Research Areas

My research area is the phenomenology of particle physics - this is the branch of theoretical physics that bridges the gap between theorists who construct more abstract models for the fundamental interaction of the constituents of the matter in the Universe at the smallest distances, and the experimenters that search for and measure phenomena, for example at the LHC at CERN. Phenomenologists use these models, new and old, to make predictions for observables in experiments or to calculate quantities that allow the experimenters to interpret their data as measurements of fundamental quantities.

My role in this is the construction of a simulation tool that tries to describe the experimental reality in great detail. Tools such as the ones I work on are also called event generators, since they generate "events", the plethora of particles that are produced when particles smash into each other at large energies. In these relatively violent collision the large energies of the incident beam particles are translated into showers of elementary particles which hit the detector at velocities very close to the speed of light. Event generators are the workhorses of particle physics, and are deployed for a wide range of purposes: Their output -- the simulated events -- is utilised to better understand detector responses to the interaction with incident particles, to help in the planning of analyses by providing an understanding of interesting signals and their backgrounds, to subtract backgrounds from signals, and to compare the most precise calculations directly with data. To fulfil these functions, they must contain all relevant physics, from the highest energies of the order of a few TeV down to the relatively low scales of MeV that characterise hadron physics. Traditional methods of evaluating quantum field theories, based upon the perturbative expansion in coupling constants, cannot fulfil this, due to two limitations: The sheer number of outgoing particles leads to a computational complexity we cannot conquer yet, and many of the produced particles are hadrons, bound states of the fundamental quarks and gluons, which form the hadrons in a phase transition that we cannot yet describe in a quantitative way. These two problems are addressed in event generators by decomposing the simulation into different phases, characterised by vastly different energy scales.

The event generator project I work on - now for more than 15 years - is called SHERPA.

We are a team of about 10 people or so from 5 countries on two continents, who work on the development, maintenance, deployment and validation of our tool.

To be more specific (and more for the specialists), here are my current research topics:

  • automatic calculation for multi-leg processes in - nearly arbitrary - models (matrix element generation and phase spacing)
  • better description of perturbative QCD radiation through parton showers
  • the connection of the parton showers to the hard sub-process - by now this can be done at next-to leading order accuracy in Sherpa for practically arbitrary processes and at next-to-next-to leading order for two relatively simple ones
  • the interface to non-perturbative QCD (fragmentation of the partons into colourless hadrons)
  • multiple interactions and the structure of hadrons
  • (new) physics at collider experiments

In addition, I collaborate with experimenters from the ATLAS collaboration on measurements of Double Parton Scattering - events where more than one pair of energetic quarks or gluons collides inside a single proton-proton scattering and gives rise to highly energetic particles.

I am also the Primary Investigator of the HEPData project, the central repository for the long-term preservation of data from collider experiments such as the LHC. It currently contains the results from more than 8000 experimental papers, spanning nearly 5 decades, in about 65,000 tables, histograms and plots.

Past and current students

I enjoy the privilege of having worked or still working with a number of highly talented and motivated young scientists:



PhD Career Path Currently Publications
Robin Linten Spires
Daniele Napoletano Spires
Silvan Kuttimalai Durham, 2016 postdoc at SLAC, Stanford, USA Spires
Jennifer Thompson Durham, 2014 postdoc at U Goettingen postdoc at U Heidelberg Spires
Oliver Hall Durham, 2013 private sector
Jennifer Archibald Durham, 2011 private sector Spires
Marek Schoenherr Dresden, 2012 postdoc IPPP Durham postdoc at U Zurich Spires
Frank Siegert Durham 2010 postdoc at Freiburg Junior Research Group leader at TU Dresden, Germany Spires
Stefan Hoeche Durham, 2008 postdocs at U Zurich, and SLAC (Stanford) Staff Scientist at SLAC, Stanford Spires
Jan Winter Dresden, 2008 postdocs at Fermilab, CERN, MPI Munich Michigan U Spires
Tanju Gleisberg Dresden, 2008 postdoc at SLAC private sector Spires
Steffen Schumann Dresden 2007 postdocs at U Edinburgh, U Heidelberg Professor at U Goettingen Spires
Andreas Schaelicke Dresden, 2005 postdocs at DESY-Zeuthen, U Edinburgh private sector Spires
Ralf Kuhn Dresden, 2002 private sector Spires

Academic lectures on phenomenology at collider experiments, Monte Carlo event generators etc.:

  • "QCD & Monte Carlo Event Generators"(3 lectures, during Maria Laach school 2016, Maria Laach, September 2016 and TRISEP school, Vancouver, June 2016)
  • "QCD and Event Generators"(15 hours lectures during "Heidelberger Graduiertentage", Heidelberg, October 2014)
  • "Precision Monte Carlo", during CTEQ school, Pittsburgh, July 2015
  • "Introduction to Event generators"
    (latest lectures linked from series of four lectures, at HiggsTools school, Pre Saint-Didier, June 2015; the MCnet summer school, Kyoto, September 2011; DESY MC school, Hamburg, March 2011; MCnet summer school, Lund, July 2009; Galileo Galilei Institute, September 2007; Fermilab-CERN Hadron Collider School, June 2007)
  • "Phenomenology at colliders" (series of eight lectures, at the RAL high-energy physics summer school, 2008-2009)

Recent Talks

Current lectures in Durham

  • "QCD" (postgraduate course, Epiphany terms 2015-2016)

Past lectures in Durham

Past lectures (in Dresden)

Outreach lecture (last)