Professor in High Energy Physics
Fellow and Director of Studies at Trinity College
JJ Thomson Avenue
Cambridge CB3 0HE
Val Gibson is the Head of the High Energy Physics Research Group in the Cavendish. She holds a Special Honours BSc in Physics from the University of Sheffield (1983) and a DPhil in Experimental Particle Physics (1986), The Queen's College, Oxford. She was a Fellow in the Experimental Physics Division at CERN (1987-89) and came to Cambridge in 1989 as an SERC Advanced Fellow, held concurrently with the Stokes Senior Research Fellowship at Pembroke College (1989-1994). She was appointed as University Lecturer and Fellow of Trinity College in 1994, Reader in 2006, held a Royal Society Leverhulme Trust Senior Fellowship (2007-08) and became a Professor in 2009.
She enjoys science communication and is a Patron of the Gravity Fields Festival held in honour of Sir Isaac Newton. She is a champion of Women in Science and spearheaded the Cavendish Laboratory's success at achieving an Athena SWAN Gold award in 2014. She is a School of Physical Sciences Equality & Diversity Champion and Chair of the Institute of Physics Juno Panel. More details about her Women in Science activities can be found at the following link: http://www.hep.phy.cam.ac.uk/~gibson/Women%20in%20Science.htm
My personal research interest is the search for new phenomena using particles containing heavy (bottom and charm) quarks. These are produced in copious amounts at the LHC and are detected by the LHCb experiment. The study of the production and decay of heavy quarks provides very precise measurements of the phenomenon called CP violation, which holds the key to our understanding of the matter-antimatter imbalance in the Universe. I have been the UK Spokesperson and PI for LHCb (2004-2008), representing 8 major institutes, and had the ultimate responsibility to deliver the UK contributions to the experiment and to ensure that the UK was at the forefront of the physics exploitation.
Previously I have worked on: the muon scattering experiment (EMC), where I made accurate measurements of the newly-discovered “EMC effect”; CP violation in the kaon system (NA31), where I made major contributions to the discovery of direct CP violation in the kaon system, and led the measurement of the CP-violating phases which set the world’s best limit for the invariance of CPT; and the OPAL experiment at the Large Electron-Positron (LEP) collider, where I played a major part in the silicon microvertex detector and B physics measurements.
My publications list can be found here.