The Standard Model of particle physics is a highly successful theory, but one that is known to be incomplete. Experiments at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN are searching for evidence of New Physics, phenomena that cannot be explained in the Standard Model and hence point the way to a higher theory. Flavour physics, in particular the study of rare and suppressed processes involving beauty hadrons, provides a very powerful tool in this quest. The Large Hadron Collider beauty (LHCb) detector is the worlds pre-eminent flavour physics experiment, and has produced a host of exciting and illuminating results in this sector. After a brief introduction to the problems of the Standard Model, and the role of flavour physics, the LHCb experiment will be described, and some recent measurements will be presented. Intriguingly, some of these measurements show tension with the predictions of the Standard Model and may turn out to be the first hints of the New Physics that lies beyond. Future prospects will be discussed, in particular the further evolution of the LHCb experiment.
Guy Wilkinson is a professor at the University of Oxford and fellow of Christ Church, Oxford. He was educated at Imperial College, London, and Oxford, and has been an STFC Advanced Fellow in Oxford, Research Fellow and Guest Professor at CERN. He was worked on the DELPHI experiment at CERN and the CLEO experiment at Cornell. He was a founding member of the LHCb collaboration and served as Spokesperson from 2014-17. This year he was awarded the Chadwick Medal and Prize from the UK Institute of Physics for his outstanding contributions to the experimental study of heavy quarks and CP Violation, most especially for his leadership of, and his decisive contributions to, the LHCb experiment at CERN.â€‹