Evidence for light-by-light scattering in heavy-ion collisions with the ATLAS detector at the LHC

The ATLAS collaboration Aaboud, Morad ; Aad, Georges ; Abbott, Brad ; et al.
Nature Phys. 13 (2017) 852-858, 2017.
Inspire Record 1512305 DOI 10.17182/hepdata.77761

Light-by-light scattering ($\gamma\gamma\rightarrow\gamma\gamma$) is a quantum-mechanical process that is forbidden in the classical theory of electrodynamics. This reaction is accessible at the Large Hadron Collider thanks to the large electromagnetic field strengths generated by ultra-relativistic colliding lead (Pb) ions. Using 480 $\mu$b$^{-1}$ of Pb+Pb collision data recorded at a centre-of-mass energy per nucleon pair of 5.02 TeV by the ATLAS detector, the ATLAS Collaboration reports evidence for the $\gamma\gamma\rightarrow\gamma\gamma$ reaction. A total of 13 candidate events are observed with an expected background of 2.6$\pm$0.7 events. After background subtraction and analysis corrections, the fiducial cross section of the process $\textrm{Pb+Pb}\,(\gamma\gamma)\rightarrow \textrm{Pb}^{(\ast)}\textrm{+}\textrm{Pb}^{(\ast)}\,\gamma\gamma$, for photon transverse energy $E_{\mathrm{T}}>$3 GeV, photon absolute pseudorapidity $|\eta|<$2.4, diphoton invariant mass greater than 6 GeV, diphoton transverse momentum lower than 2 GeV and diphoton acoplanarity below 0.01, is measured to be 70 $\pm$ 24 (stat.) $\pm$ 17 (syst.) nb, which is in agreement with Standard Model predictions.

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Evidence for light-by-light scattering and searches for axion-like particles in ultraperipheral PbPb collisions at $\sqrt{s_\mathrm{NN}} =$ 5.02 TeV

The CMS collaboration Sirunyan, Albert M ; Tumasyan, Armen ; Adam, Wolfgang ; et al.
Phys.Lett.B 797 (2019) 134826, 2019.
Inspire Record 1697838 DOI 10.17182/hepdata.95242

Evidence for the light-by-light scattering process, $\gamma\gamma$ $\to$ $\gamma\gamma$, in ultraperipheral PbPb collisions at a centre-of-mass energy per nucleon pair of 5.02 TeV is reported. The analysis is conducted using a data sample corresponding to an integrated luminosity of 390 $\mu$b$^{-1}$ recorded by the CMS experiment at the LHC. Light-by-light scattering processes are selected in events with two photons exclusively produced, each with transverse energy E$_\mathrm{T}^{\gamma}$ $>$ 2 GeV, pseudorapidity $|\eta^{\gamma}|$ $\lt$ 2.4, diphoton invariant mass $m^{\gamma\gamma}$ $\gt$ 5 GeV, diphoton transverse momentum $p_\mathrm{T}^{\gamma\gamma}$ $\lt$ 1 GeV, and diphoton acoplanarity below 0.01. After all selection criteria are applied, 14 events are observed, compared to expectations of 9.0 $\pm$ 0.9 (theo) events for the signal and 4.0 $\pm$ 1.2 (stat) for the background processes. The excess observed in data relative to the background-only expectation corresponds to a significance of 3.7 standard deviations, and has properties consistent with those expected for the light-by-light scattering signal. The measured fiducial light-by-light scattering cross section, $\sigma_\mathrm{fid} (\gamma\gamma$ $\to$ $\gamma\gamma) =$ 120 $\pm$ 46 (stat) $\pm$ 28 (syst) $\pm$ 12 (theo) nb, is consistent with the standard model prediction. The $m^{\gamma\gamma}$ distribution is used to set new exclusion limits on the production of pseudoscalar axion-like particles, via the $\gamma\gamma$ $\to$ a $\to$ $\gamma\gamma$ process, in the mass range $m_{\mathrm{a}} =$ 5-90 GeV.

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