The scattering of high-energetic photons has been studied for many decades. The long interest in this endeavor is largely motivated by the study of nucleon and meson excitations, which manifest themselves as specific configurations of quarks or as gluonic excitation. The excitation of the glue that holds quarks and antiquarks closely together in mesons is predicted by the theory of strong interaction but has not been experimentally established. The GlueX experiment being constructed at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (JLab) in Newport News, VA, will be devoted to the search for such excitation. By using a high-energetic, highly polarized photon beam and a high-resolution detector with complete angular coverage, the GlueX experiment is predetermined to settle the question. Through NSF support, CUA is able to proceed with constructing and maintaining the broad-band tagging hodoscope and the polarized photon source for this experiment. Moreover, for many years CUA has been a leading institution in the polarized target program at JLab, aimed to measure all components of the scattering amplitudes in form of polarization observables, and thus to disentangle unambiguously the resonant contributions to the scattering. The grant provided by NSF will also support CUA's continuing efforts in the analysis of data taken on frozen-spin targets in JLab's Hall B. Their research aims for settling long-standing questions in our understanding of nuclear matter, which is comprised of quarks and gluons. To this end they develop state-of-the-art equipment and advanced software packages. Students and postdoctoral researchers are strongly involved in this effort. Their training under professional guidance will strengthen their analytical competence and prepare them for responsible and leading positions in the modern technological society.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Physics (PHY)
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Alice Mignerey
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Catholic University of America
United States
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