Thesis/Dissertation: Measurement of the photon electroproduction cross section at JLAB with the goal of performing a Rosenbluth separation of the DVCS contribution

Title: Measurement of the photon electroproduction cross section at JLAB with the goal of performing a Rosenbluth separation of the DVCS contribution

The study of the inner structure of hadrons allows us to understand the nature of the interactions between partons, quarks and gluons, described by Quantum Chromodynamics. The elastic scattering reactions, which have been studied in order to measure the nucleon form factors, are included in this frame. The inelastic scattering reactions are also included in this frame, they allow us to obtain information about the nucleon structure thanks to the development of the parton distribution functions (PDFs). While through elastic scattering we can obtain information about the charge distribution of the nucleon, and hence, about the spatial distribution of the partons, through inelastic scattering we obtain information about the momentum distributions of partons, by employing the PDFs. However, we can study the exclusive inelastic scattering reactions, such as the Deeply Virtual Compton Scattering (DVCS), wich allow us to access to the spatial and momentum distributions simultaneously. This is possible thanks to the generalized parton distributions (GPDs), which allow us to correlate both types of distributions. The process known as DVCS is the easiest way to access the GPDs. This process can be expressed as the scattering of an electron by a proton by means of a virtual photon with themore » result of the scattered initial particles plus a real photon. We find a process competing with DVCS known as Bethe-Heitler (BH), in which the real photon is radiated by the lepton rather than the quark. Due to the small cross section of DVCS, of the order of nb, in order to conduct these kind of experiments it is necessary to make use of facilities capable of providing high beam intensities. One of these facilities is the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility , where the experiment JLab E07-007, "Complete Separation of Virtual Photon and π⁰ Electroproduction Observables of Unpolarized Protons", took place during the months of October to December of 2010. The main goal of this experiment is the isolation of the contribution from the term coming form the DVCS from the interference term, resulting from the BH contribution. This isolation is known as "Rosenbluth Separation". The work presented in this thesis focuses on the analysis of the data stored by the electromagnetic calorimeter, employed for the detection of real photons. There is also a a theoretical introduction to the study of the nucleon structure, reviewing the concepts of form factors and parton distributions through elastic and inelastic processes. The computation of the photon leptoproduction cross section is described in detail, as well as the goals of experiment E07-007. This thesis also describes the analysis of the data stored by the electromagnetic calorimeter, with the purpose of obtaining the kinematic variables of the real photons resulting from DVCS reactions. Finally, it describes the selection of events from stored data, the applied cuts to kinematical variables and the background subtraction. Also, the process of extraction of the necessary observables for computing the photon leptoproduction cross section is described, along with the main steps followed to perform the Monte Carlo simulation used in this computation. The resulting cross sections are shown at the end of this thesis.« less