Associate Professor, Physics, IISER-Pune
Fellow, Indian Academy of Sciences

Address:    Indian Institute of Science Education & Research
Pune, Maharashra, 411008
Office: Main Building A-343
(+91) 20 2590 8228
CERN: bat. 40/4-B28
E-mail: seema[at]iiserpune[dot]ac[dot]in
About Me   Research   Group Members   Publications    Professional Services   Talks   Awards  

About Me

I am an experimental particle physicist and a member of the CMS Experimental Collaboration at Large Hadron Collider (LHC), CERN. I joined the physics faculty at Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune in April 2014. Just before joining the IISER, I was a postdoctoral research associate at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab). I did my PhD from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai. My undergraduate studies were completed at University of Rajasthan, Jaipur. I grew up in a small town in Rajasthan, called Kankroli (Rajsamand) where I also completed my school education.

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My research interests revolve around understanding the identity and nature of fundamental constituents of the universe. I study proton proton collisions at high energies (13 TeV at present) delivered by the LHC at CERN, outcome of which are recorded by the CMS Experiment. Presently, my group is focussed on searching for the new physics beyond the Standard Model (BSM) of elementary particles to be able to shed light on yet unaswered questions like dark matter, hierarchy problem, and matter-antimatter asymmetry to name a few. Several extensions of the SM physics e.g. Supersymmetry, Two-Higgs-doublet models, extended neutrino sectors, etc. predict new particles which, if they exist in nature, could be produced and discovered at the LHC.

The CMS detector is a the most powerful "microscope" which allows us to "see" the high energy particles produced at the LHC. My group is actively working on the state-of-art CMS High Granularity Calorimeter which will be used in the High Luminosity operations of the LHC (HL-LHC), scheduled to commence in 2029. We are contributing to the studies using small test-bench systems in laboratory and large scale prototype testing using single particle beams at the beam test experiments facilities as the CERN. We are also studying handling of large data rates at the backend of the system.

Machine learning tools have been widely used in data analysis in particle physics in last few decades. With the recent overall escalation of computing infrastructure and developments in algorithms, we can impressively enhance the information extraction from data, which were unthinkable earlier. My group is working on developing algorithms for reconstruction of hadronic and electromagnetic showers using graphical neural networks which provide an effective solution for handling of the sparse and irregular data from the detectors. These low level developments directly improve all other objects likes reconstruction of jets, missing transverse momentum, electrons, muons, and taus which are all important discovery tools at the LHC, and key objects used in new physics searches being pursued in my group.

Along with my quest for finding unnaturalness in the natural world around us, I also hope to transmit my excitement for the physics of elementary particles and fascination for detection techniques to graduate and undergraduate students collaborating with me on various projects.

Opportunities: Call for IISER-Pune Physics PhD and IntPhD application for the session starting in August 2023 is open, click here. Last date for applications in April 20, 2023.
I have a few openings for PhD students to work on the CMS Experiment in our group.
Interested in working with MSc (Physics) as well as BE/BTech (electronics and communication) students aspiring to pursue higher studies in particle physics or detector physics - lots of exciting opportunities in CMS upgrade projects for HL-LHC and physics analysis using Run-3 data.
Please note that all the applications have to be submitted via the application portal and candidates will be selected via departmental procedure.

Recent & ongoing projects

Please refer to Publications and Group Members sections for more details about our ongoing and past projects.

Leadership roles

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Group Members

Current Members         


Bhumika Kansal
PhD (2017-present)
Research: SUSY searches, PF hadrons energy calibration, MC production
MSc (Physics) - Univ. of Delhi


Alpana Sirohi
PhD (2019-present)
Research: HGCAL pions using GNNs, GEANT4, backend data-handling, new physics searches with low-pT photons
MSc (Physics) - Univ. of Delhi


Chetan Agrawal
Int-PhD (2022-present), IISER-Pune
Research: presently learning data analysis tools and basics of particle physics
BSc (Physics), Pt. Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur, Chhattisgarh


Nitish Kumar
BSMS (2018-present), IISER-Pune
MS Thesis (ongoing)
Research: Semiparamtric GNNs for pions in HGCAL, GEANT4


Chirayu Gupta
BSMS (2019-present), IISER-Pune
Semester Project (ongoing)
Research: reconstruction of merged photons in CMS ECAL

Previous Members (Click here)

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A complete list of my publications is available in INSPIRE. The CMS journal publications and detector performance summaries where I made direct personal contributions are summarized in the following.

Selected Publications Detector Perfomance Reports Others

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Professional Service

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Conference and Invited Talks

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Fellow, Awards and research grants

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