Limits on transverse momentum dependent evolution from semi-inclusive deep inelastic scattering at moderate Q

C. A. Aidala, B. Field, L. P. Gamberg, T. C. Rogers

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Abstract

In the QCD evolution of transverse momentum dependent parton distribution and fragmentation functions, the Collins-Soper evolution kernel includes both a perturbative short-distance contribution and a large-distance nonperturbative, but strongly universal, contribution. In the past, global fits, based mainly on larger Q Drell-Yan-like processes, have found substantial contributions from nonperturbative regions in the Collins-Soper evolution kernel. In this article, we investigate semi-inclusive deep inelastic scattering measurements in the region of relatively small Q, of the order of a few GeV, where sensitivity to nonperturbative transverse momentum dependence may become more important or even dominate the evolution. Using recently available deep inelastic scattering data from the COMPASS experiment, we provide estimates of the regions of coordinate space that dominate in transverse momentum dependent (TMD) processes when the hard scale is of the order of only a few GeV. We find that distance scales that are much larger than those commonly probed in large Q measurements become important, suggesting that the details of nonperturbative effects in TMD evolution are especially significant in the region of intermediate Q. We highlight the strongly universal nature of the nonperturbative component of evolution and its potential to be tightly constrained by fits from a wide variety of observables that include both large and moderate Q. On this basis, we recommend detailed treatments of the nonperturbative component of the Collins-Soper evolution kernel for future TMD studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number094002
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Volume89
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 5 2014

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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