Michael Hildreth

Professor, Department of Physics & Astronomy

Professor, Department of Physics & Astronomy

110C Bond Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556

Research Interests

Prof. Hildreth’s primary physics interest is in understanding the mechanism or mechanisms responsible for Electroweak Symmetry Breaking. Simply put, this would answer questions like: “why is there mass?”  Prof. Hildreth is a part of the CMS Experiment at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) in Geneva, Switzerland, where he and the rest of the Notre Dame High Energy Physics group played key roles in the recent discovery of a Higgs boson.  His group is involved in measuring Higgs properties and using precision measurements to understand the potential impact of new physics at inaccessible mass scales from subtle effects that could be observable in the LHC data. These measurements are essential in determining if the Higgs we see is really the source of Electroweak Symmetry Breaking and the origin of particle masses, or whether new physics is required.  He is also working on searches for new physics beyond the Standard Model of particle physics, specifically looking for new physics in final states involving high energy photons and, separately, for new heavy quarks.

Prof. Hildreth is currently leading the US-CMS group responsible for directing research and development for software and computing infrastructure aimed at meeting the computational challenges that will be faced at the High Luminosity LHC at the end of this decade.

Recently, Prof. Hildreth has led a multi-university team that is exploring the programmatic and technical intricacies of knowledge preservation in science.  The DAta and Software Preservation for Open Science (DASPOS) team consists of physicists, computer scientists, and digital librarians from Notre Dame, University of Chicago, University of Illinois Urbana-Champagne, University of Nebraska Lincoln, New York University, and the University of Washington.  This is a multi-disciplinary effort designed to explore the knowledge preservation needs of various disciplines and to construct a prototype data and software preservation architecture that can be used as a template for knowledge preservation efforts in different fields of science.  This has led to the development of the REANA platform in conjunction with CERN, a mechanism for preserving and re-instantiating particle physics analyses.

Separately, Prof. Hildreth is currently leading the SCAILFIN (Scalable Cyberinfrastructure for Artificial Intelligence and Likelihood Free INference) project with collaborators from NYU and UIUC. This work extends the REANA infrastructure so that it can orchestrate large machine-learning training workflows on large High Performance Computing centers.

Honors and Activities

American Physical Society, Fellow

Shilts/Leonard Teaching Award in the College of Science, Notre Dame, 2014

Thomas P. Madden Award as the Outstanding First Year Instructor, Notre Dame, 2010

Rev. Joyce Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, Notre Dame, 2008

Research Corporation Cottrell Scholar, 2003

Department of Energy Outstanding Junior Investigator, 2002


A.B., Princeton Universty, 1988
Ph.D., Stanford University, 1995


CMS Collaboration, Evidence for associated production of a Higgs boson with a top quark pair in final states with electrons, muons, and hadronically decaying t leptons at √s = 13 TeV,  J. High Energy Phys.  08 (2018) 066.

CMS Collaboration, Search for supersymmetry in events with photons and missing transverse energy in pp collisions at 13, Phys. Lett. B 769 (2017) 391-412.

M. Wolf, et al., Opportunistic Computing with Lobster: Lessons Learned from Scaling up to 25k Non-Dedicated Cores,  in IOP Conf. Series: Journal of Physics: Conf. Series 898 (2017) 052036.

M.D. Hildreth, et al. (DASPOS Project), Data and Software Preservation for Open Science (DASPOS), proceedings of CHEP2013: October 14-18, 2013, Amsterdam, J. Phys: Conf. Ser. 513 (2014).

A. Woodard, M. Wolf, C. Mueller, N. Valls, B. Tovar, P. Donnelly, P. Ivie, K. H. Anampa, P. Brenner, D. Thain, K. Lannon and M. D. Hildreth, Scaling Data Intensive Physics Applications to 10k Cores on Non-Dedicated Clusters with Lobster', IEEE Conference on Cluster Computing, September, 2015. DOI 10.1109/CLUSTER.2015.53

CMS Collaboration, Search for stop and higgsino production using diphoton Higgs boson decays, Phys. Rev. Lett. 112 (2014) 161802.

CMS Collaboration, Observation of a new boson with mass near 125 GeV in pp collisions at √s = 7 and 8 TeV,  J. High Energy Phys. 06 (2013) 081

CMS Collaboration, Search for the standard model Higgs boson produced in association with a top-quark pair in pp collisions at the LHC  J. High Energy Phys. 05 (2013) 145

CMS Collaboration, Search for new physics in events with photons, jets, and missing transverse energy in pp collisions at √s = 7 TeV,  J. High Energy Phys. 03 (2013) 111

CMS Collaboration, Search for high mass resonances decaying into τ-lepton pairs in pp collisions at √s = 7 TeV,  Phys. Lett. B 716 (2012) 82-102