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The production of a neutral and a charged vector boson with subsequent decays into three charged leptons and a neutrino is a very important process for precision tests of the Standard Model of elementary particles and in searches for anomalous triple-gauge-boson couplings. In this article, the first computation of next-to-leading-order electroweak corrections to the production of the four-lepton final states μ\(^{+}\)μ\(^{−}\)e\(^{+}\)ν\(_{e}\), μ\(^{+}\)μ\(^{−}\)e\(^{−}\)ν\(_{e}\), μ\(^{+}\)μ\(^{−}\)μ\(^{+}\)ν\(_{μ}\), and μ\(^{+}\)μ\(^{−}\)μ\(^{−}\)ν\(_{μ}\) at the Large Hadron Collider is presented. We use the complete matrix elements at leading and next-to-leading order, including all off-shell effects of intermediate massive vector bosons and virtual photons. The relative electroweak corrections to the fiducial cross sections from quark-induced partonic processes vary between −3% and −6%, depending significantly on the event selection. At the level of differential distributions, we observe large negative corrections of up to −30% in the high-energy tails of distributions originating from electroweak Sudakov logarithms. Photon-induced contributions at next-to-leading order raise the leading-order fiducial cross section by +2%. Interference effects in final states with equal-flavour leptons are at the permille level for the fiducial cross section, but can lead to sizeable effects in off-shell sensitive phase-space regions.

Complete NLO corrections to W\(^{+}\)W\(^{+}\) scattering and its irreducible background at the LHC
(2017)

The process pp → μ\(^{+}\)ν\(_{μ}\)e\(^{+}\)ν\(_{e}\)jj receives several contributions of different orders in the strong and electroweak coupling constants. Using appropriate event selections, this process is dominated by vector-boson scattering (VBS) and has recently been measured at the LHC. It is thus of prime importance to estimate precisely each contribution. In this article we compute for the first time the full NLO QCD and electroweak corrections to VBS and its irreducible background processes with realistic experimental cuts. We do not rely on approximations but use complete amplitudes involving two different orders at tree level and three different orders at one-loop level. Since we take into account all interferences, at NLO level the corrections to the VBS process and to the QCD-induced irreducible background process contribute at the same orders. Hence the two processes cannot be unambiguously distinguished, and all contributions to the μ\(^{+}\)ν\(_{μ}\)e\(^{+}\)ν\(_{e}\)jj final state should be preferably measured together.

This publication presents the combination of the one-loop matrix-element generator Recola with the multipurpose Monte Carlo program Sherpa. Since both programs are highly automated, the resulting Sherpa +Recola framework allows for the computation of – in principle – any Standard Model process at both NLO QCD and EW accuracy. To illustrate this, three representative LHC processes have been computed at NLO QCD and EW: vector-boson production in association with jets, off-shell Z-boson pair production, and the production of a top-quark pair in association with a Higgs boson. In addition to fixed-order computations, when considering QCD corrections, all functionalities of Sherpa, i.e. particle decays, QCD parton showers, hadronisation, underlying events, etc. can be used in combination with Recola. This is demonstrated by the merging and matching of one-loop QCD matrix elements for Drell–Yan production in association with jets to the parton shower. The implementation is fully automatised, thus making it a perfect tool for both experimentalists and theorists who want to use state-of-the-art predictions at NLO accuracy.

Next-to-leading-order electroweak corrections to the production of four charged leptons at the LHC
(2017)

We present a state-of-the-art calculation of the next-to leading-order electroweak corrections to ZZ production, including the leptonic decays of the Z bosons into μ\(^+\)μ\(^ −\)e\(^+\)e\(^−\) or μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\) final states. We use complete leading-order and next-to-leading-order matrix elements for four-lepton production, including contributions of virtual photons and all off-shell effects of Z bosons, where the finite Z-boson width is taken into account using the complex-mass scheme. The matrix elements are implemented into Monte Carlo programs allowing for the evaluation of arbitrary differential distributions. We present integrated and differential cross sections for the LHC at 13 TeV both for an inclusive setup where only lepton identification cuts are applied, and for a setup motivated by Higgs-boson analyses in the four-lepton decay channel. The electroweak corrections are divided into photonic and purely weak contributions. The former show the well-known pronounced tails near kinematical thresholds and resonances; the latter are generically at the level of ∼ −5% and reach several −10% in the high-energy tails of distributions. Comparing the results for μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)e\(^+\)e\(^−\) and μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\) final states, we find significant differences mainly in distributions that are sensitive to the μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\) pairing in the μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\) final state. Differences between μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)e\(^+\)e\(^−\) and μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\)μ\(^+\)μ\(^−\) channels due to interferences of equal-flavour leptons in the final state can reach up to 10% in off-shell-sensitive regions. Contributions induced by incoming photons, i.e. photon-photon and quark-photon channels, are included, but turn out to be phenomenologically unimportant.