Transverse spin effects in hard semi-inclusive collisions
Anselmino, M; Mukherjee, A; Vossen, A
The nucleons (protons and neutrons) are by far the most abundant form of matter in our visible Universe; they are composite particles made of quarks and gluons, the fundamental quanta of Quantum Chromo Dynamics (QCD). The usual interpretation of the nucleon dynamics in high energy interactions is often limited to a simple one-dimensional picture of a fast moving nucleon as a collection of co-linearly moving quarks and gluons (partons), interacting accordingly to perturbative QCD rules. However, massive experimental evidence shows that, in particular when transverse spin dependent observables are involved, such a simple picture is not adequate. The intrinsic transverse motion of partons has to be taken into account; this opens the way to a new, truly 3-dimensional (3D) study of the nucleon structure. A review of the main experimental data, their interpretation and understanding in terms of new transverse momentum dependent partonic distributions, and the progress in building a 3D imaging of the nucleon is presented.