End-To-End Latent Variational Diffusion Models for Inverse Problems in High Energy Physics

Part of Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 36 (NeurIPS 2023) Main Conference Track

Bibtex Paper Supplemental


Alexander Shmakov, Kevin Greif, Michael Fenton, Aishik Ghosh, Pierre Baldi, Daniel Whiteson


High-energy collisions at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) provide valuable insights into open questions in particle physics. However, detector effects must be corrected before measurements can be compared to certain theoretical predictions or measurements from other detectors. Methods to solve this inverse problem of mapping detector observations to theoretical quantities of the underlying collision are essential parts of many physics analyses at the LHC. We investigate and compare various generative deep learning methods to approximate this inverse mapping. We introduce a novel unified architecture, termed latent variational diffusion models, which combines the latent learning of cutting-edge generative art approaches with an end-to-end variational framework. We demonstrate the effectiveness of this approach for reconstructing global distributions of theoretical kinematic quantities, as well as for ensuring the adherence of the learned posterior distributions to known physics constraints. Our unified approach achieves a distribution-free distance to the truth of over 20 times smaller than non-latent state-of-the-art baseline and 3 times smaller than traditional latent diffusion models.