Off-shell effects in Higgs processes at a linear collider and implications for the LHC

Liebler, Stefan (DESY, Notkestraße 85, 22607, Hamburg, Germany) ; Moortgat-Pick, Gudrid (DESY, Notkestraße 85, 22607, Hamburg, Germany) (II. Institut für Theoretische Physik, Universität Hamburg, Luruper Chaussee 149, 22761, Hamburg, Germany) ; Weiglein, Georg (DESY, Notkestraße 85, 22607, Hamburg, Germany)

22 June 2015

Abstract: The importance of off-shell contributions is discussed for H → V V (∗) with V ∈ { Z,W } for large invariant masses m VV involving a standard model (SM)-like Higgs boson with m H = 125 GeV at a linear collider (LC). Both dominant production processes e + e − → ZH → ZV V (∗) and e + e − → ν ν ¯ H → ν ν ¯ V V ∗ $$ {e}^{+}{e}^{-}\to \nu \overline{\nu}H\to \nu \overline{\nu}V{V}^{\left(\ast \right)} $$ are taken into account, and the signal processes are compared with background yielding the same final state. The relative size of the off-shell contributions is strongly dependent on the centre-of-mass energy. These contributions can have an important impact on the determination of cross sections and branching ratios. However, the combination of on- and off-shell contributions can also be utilised to lift degeneracies allowing to test higher-dimensional operators, unitarity and light and heavy Higgs interferences in extended Higgs sectors. The latter is demonstrated in the context of a 2-Higgs-Doublet model. We also discuss the impact of these aspects for the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) where they are relevant. The importance of a precise measurement of the Higgs mass for on-shell contributions in H → V V (∗) is emphasized. A particular focus is put on methods for extracting the Higgs width at a LC. Off-shell contributions are shown to have a negligible impact on the width determination at low s $$ \sqrt{s} $$ when applying the Z recoil method to extract branching ratios in combination with an appropriate determination of a partial width. On the other hand, off-shell contributions can be exploited to constrain the Higgs width in a similar fashion as in recent analyses at the LHC. It is demonstrated that this approach, besides relying heavily on theoretical assumptions, is affected by the negative interference of Higgs and background contributions that may limit the sensitivity that is achievable with the highest foreseeable statistics at the LHC and a LC.

Published in: JHEP 1506 (2015) 093
Published by: Springer/SISSA
DOI: 10.1007/JHEP06(2015)093
arXiv: 1502.07970
License: CC-BY-4.0

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