MEPhI graduate Sergey Polikarpov is a coordinator of research group at Large Hadron Collider

MEPhI graduate Sergey Polikarpov was elected the coordinator of a research group on the physics of beautiful hadrons in the CMS collaboration. The international CMS experiment at the Large Hadron Collider is one of the largest experiments in modern physics. CMS has over 4000 particle physicists, engineers, computer scientists, technicians and students from around 200 institutes and universities from more than 40 countries.

Experienced scientists who have been working in the field of high-energy physics for decades are usually appointed to the position of group coordinator. However, his active participation in the collaboration and the preparation of articles help Sergey to earn the respect and trust of foreign colleagues.

— Sergey, when did you join the CMS collaboration? What is the research object of your research group?

— I joined the CMS collaboration in summer 2015 when I entered MEPhI postgraduate program.  Our research group of the Department of Experimental Nuclear Physics and Space Physics is studying mainly the physics of beautiful hadrons — particles that contain a b-quark. Members of the research group regularly visit CERN to conduct work on the detector and participate in workshops with foreign colleagues. Five out of ten recent CMS collaboration works on the physics of beautiful hadrons were performed by members of our group. We search for particles with unusual properties and investigate the excited states of known particles by analyzing data collected by the experiment. It is very interesting!

— Recently you became a group coordinator. What new responsibilities do you have?

— I did not expect to be nominated, and even more, to be chosen as a coordinator. It is a rather complicated and responsible work, in which are involved more experienced scientists. I hope I will not let my colleagues down, whose trust I have earned.

Now I need to devote more time to the work that other members of the CMS collaboration are doing. My responsibilities include carefully reviewing my colleagues' preliminary research results, organization of working meetings,  interaction with other groups coordinators and with the physical coordinators of the CMS experiment, planning reports at conferences, as well as planning the research  development of the group of physics of beautiful hadrons in the future.

— How does your teamwork during quarantine? Are there any changes or difficulties compared to the usual working regime?

— The work continues, although there is a lack of live communication with colleagues. I am talking about communication within the scientific group, and about participating in international conferences and communicating with colleagues at CERN during business trips. At the home office, it’s harder to focus on the tasks you need to complete.

—  You graduated the program “Physics of Fundamental Interactions” at the Department of Experimental Nuclear Physics and Cosmophysics. Please, tell us about studying that program.

— Studying our program takes place at the Lebedev Physical Institute.The teachers are current scientists, including six members of the RAS. Scientists are engaged in scientific leadership. Students also go on trips to CERN and KEK (Japan) and participate in international conferences. Many students decide to enroll in the postgraduate program. Now in our group seven postgraduate students who have got a master’s degree at MEPhI.

— How did studying at MEPhI influence your scientific career?

—  I am thankful to my studying and working at MEPhI, and my supervisor Mikhail Vladimirovich Danilov. I had the opportunity to visit CERN every year, actively participate in the CMS collaboration, get acquainted and communicate with foreign colleagues, participate in dataset during proton collisions at the Large Hadron Collider.

During postgraduate studies, I contributed to the preparation of three articles, based on two of them I defended my dissertation a year ago. I also participated in setting up an experiment trigger and in a data set. It allowed me to get acquainted with many Russian and foreign scientists, which is undoubtedly very important for the career of a young researcher