Chiral dynamics and partonic structure at large transverse distances

M. Strikman, C. Weiss

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34 Scopus citations


We study large-distance contributions to the nucleon's parton densities in the transverse coordinate (impact parameter) representation based on generalized parton distributions (GPDs). Chiral dynamics generates a distinct component of the partonic structure, located at momentum fractions x□Mπ/MN and transverse distances b∼1/Mπ. We calculate this component using phenomenological pion exchange with a physical lower limit in b (the transverse "core" radius estimated from the nucleon's axial form factor, Rcore=0.55fm) and demonstrate its universal character. This formulation preserves the basic picture of the "pion cloud" model of the nucleon's sea quark distributions, while restricting its application to the region actually governed by chiral dynamics. It is found that (a) the large-distance component accounts for only ∼1/3 of the measured antiquark flavor asymmetry d̄-ū at x∼0.1; (b) the strange sea quarks s and s̄ are significantly more localized than the light antiquark sea; (c) the nucleon's singlet quark size for x<0.1 is larger than its gluonic size, □b2□q+q̄>□b2□g, as suggested by the t-slopes of deeply-virtual Compton scattering and exclusive J/ψ production measured at HERA and FNAL. We show that our approach reproduces the general Nc-scaling of parton densities in QCD, thanks to the degeneracy of N and Δ intermediate states in the large-Nc limit. We also comment on the role of pionic configurations at large longitudinal distances and the limits of their applicability at small x.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number114029
JournalPhysical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Dec 30 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


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