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Published February 14, 2008 | Submitted
Journal Article Open

New physics effects in Higgs decay to tau leptons


We study the possible effects of TeV scale new physics (NP) on the rate for Higgs boson decays to charged leptons, focusing on the τ^+τ^− channel which can be readily studied at the Large Hadron collider. Using an SU(3)_C×SU(2)_L×U(1)_Y invariant effective theory valid below a NP scale , we determine all effective operators up to dimension six that could generate appreciable contributions to the decay rate and compute the dependence of the rate on the corresponding operator coefficients. We bound the size of these operator coefficients based on the scale of the τ mass, naturalness considerations, and experimental constraints on the τ anomalous magnetic moment. These considerations imply that contributions to the decay rate, when Λ ~ TeV, could be comparable to the prediction based on the SM Yukawa interaction. A reliable test of the Higgs mechanism for fermion mass generation via the h → τ^+τ^− channel is possible only after such NP effects are understood and brought under theoretical control.

Additional Information

© 2008 Elsevier B.V. Received 11 September 2007; revised 8 November 2007; accepted 12 December 2007. Editor: B. Grinstein. Available online 3 January 2008. We thank B. Grinstein, J.Kile, A. Manohar, and M. Wise for useful conversations and comments on the manuscript. This work supported in part by the US Department of Energy under contracts DE-FG03- 97ER40546 (MT), DE-FG02-05ER41361 (MRM), and DE-FG03-92ER40701 (SM); and by the NSF under grant PHY-PHY-0555674 (MR-M).

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