My research focuses on the deepest open questions in elementary particle physics and Nature: what is the nature of dark matter, which constitutes 85% of all the matter in our Universe? Does dark matter interact with ordinary matter beyond gravity? What is the origin of electroweak symmetry breaking that is key to understand the microscopic origin of masses? Why is the Higgs boson, the ground-breaking discovery at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), light?

At the very moment, there is no clear confirmed evidence of the right answers to these tough questions. Instead we have a whole zoo of theories and experimental probes to address them. While it is unlikely that a narrow single route could be the right direction to pursue, it is, however, much more promising to explore a wide range of theoretical and experimental possibilities to leave no stone unturned and dig out a potential clue. More importantly, these questions may be intrinsically intertwined with each other though they are usually studied as separate subjects by different groups of researchers.

I have been actively pursuing a variety of directions to tackle these problems. My research is at the interface between elementary particle physics, astrophysics, and cosmology.  In particular, I have always been developing novel ideas and pushing myself to work on new topics beyond my comfort zone, which may not belong to the most popular trends in the community at the moment but are intellectually intriguing and meritorious. My research will also continue to incorporate a model-building approach and a phenomenologically oriented/numerically driven approach, which complement each other.

You could find my publications/preprints here.

Some Research highlights

1. Dark matter dynamics

2. Cosmological probes of fundamental physics

  • Cosmic Higgs dynamics: I have been developing new classes of cosmological models with novel signatures and potentially interesting connections to particle physics such as Higgs physics and modulating fields. These include
    “Higgscitement” with exponential Higgs particle production and generation of gravitational waves in the early Universe;
    “cosmic Higgs switching” in which an oscillating electroweak phase leads to characteristic oscillations on the primordial spectrum and CMB;
    –  “cosmic microscope” in which spatial variations of a light field, which is generated during inflation, imprint nonlinear dynamics at tiny scales on large scale fluctuations and provide us a unique probe through non-Gaussianities into the preheating era.
  • New preheating model: I have proposed a novel particle production meachanism, “spillway preheating”, that could improve the depletion of the inflaton energy density by up to four orders of magnitude, compared to canonical mechanisms in the literature. 

3. Electroweak and collider physics