Prof Frank Krauss

Institute for Particle Physics Phenomenology
Department of Physics

University of Durham
Science Laboratories
South Rd
Durham DH1 3LE

Office: OC 201
Tel: +44-(0)191-33-43751 (direct)
Tel: +44-(0)191-33-43811 (IPPP Office)
Fax: +44-(0)191-33-43658

E-mail: frank.krauss'at'

Brief Curriculum Vitae



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:

In addition, I collaborated 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.

Motivated by the Covid-19 pandemic I developed some interest in the simulation of epidemics and how they spread through a population. Together with academic collegaues in Durham and at UCL, and with PhD students from the STFC-funded Centre for Doctoral Training I created the individual-based model JUNE. It has recently been published in R. Soc. Open Sci. 8 (2021): 210506.

Past and current students

I enjoy the privilege of having worked or still working with a number of highly talented and motivated young scientists: > > > >
PhDCareer PathCurrently Publications
Parisa Gregg Durham, 2022 Publications
Alan Price Durham, 2020 Postdoc at U Siegen, Germany Publications
Robin Linten Durham, 2018 System Optics Engineer, Carl Zeiss, Germany Publications
Daniele Napoletano Durham, 2017 Postdoc at U Paris, JussieuPostdoc at U Milan-Bicocca Publications
Silvan Kuttimalai Durham, 2016 Postdoc at SLAC Research Physicist at 1QBit Publications
Jennifer Thompson Durham, 2013 Postdocs at U and U Heidelberg, Germany Data Scientist at Bosch
Oliver Hall Durham, 2013 Private sector
Jennifer Archibald Durham, 2011 Associate
Marek Schoenherr Dresden, 2012 Postdocs at IPPP Durham, U Zurich, CERN
Frank Siegert (PhD 2010, Durham, postdoc at Freiburg, now Junior Research Group leader at TU Dresden, Germany)
Stefan Hoeche (PhD 2008, Durham, postdocs at U Zurich, SLAC, now Staff Scientist at SLAC, Stanford, USA)
Jan Winter (PhD 2008, Dresden, postdocs at Fermilab, CERN, MPI Munich, now at Michigan U, USA)
Tanju Gleisberg (PhD 2008, Dresden, postdoc at SLAC, now private sector)
Steffen Schumann (PhD 2007, Dresden, postdocs at Edinburgh, Heidelberg, now Professor at U Goettingen, Germany)
Andreas Schaetrcke (PhD 2005, Dresden, postdocs at DESY-Zeuthen, Edinburgh, now private sector)
Ralf Kuhn (PhD 2002, Dresden, now private sector)

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

Recent Talks

Current lectures in Durham

Past lectures in Durham

Past lectures (in Dresden)

Outreach lecture (last)