Light meson form factors at high Q2 from lattice QCD
INFN, Sezione di Roma Tor Vergata, Via della Ricerca Scientifica 1, I-00133 Roma, Italy
2 SUPA, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G12 8QQ, UK
3 São Carlos Institute of Physics, University of São Paulo, PO Box 369, 13560-970, São Carlos, SP, Brazil
4 Laboratory for Elementary-Particle Physics, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA
* Speaker, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published online: 26 March 2018
Measurements and theoretical calculations of meson form factors are essential for our understanding of internal hadron structure and QCD, the dynamics that bind the quarks in hadrons. The pion electromagnetic form factor has been measured at small space-like momentum transfer |q2| < 0.3 GeV2 by pion scattering from atomic electrons and at values up to 2.5 GeV2 by scattering electrons from the pion cloud around a proton. On the other hand, in the limit of very large (or infinite) Q2 = −q2, perturbation theory is applicable. This leaves a gap in the intermediate Q2 where the form factors are not known.
As a part of their 12 GeV upgrade Jefferson Lab will measure pion and kaon form factors in this intermediate region, up to Q2 of 6 GeV2. This is then an ideal opportunity for lattice QCD to make an accurate prediction ahead of the experimental results. Lattice QCD provides a from-first-principles approach to calculate form factors, and the challenge here is to control the statistical and systematic uncertainties as errors grow when going to higher Q2 values.
Here we report on a calculation that tests the method using an ηs meson, a ’heavy pion’ made of strange quarks, and also present preliminary results for kaon and pion form factors. We use the nf = 2 + 1 + 1 ensembles made by the MILC collaboration and Highly Improved Staggered Quarks, which allows us to obtain high statistics. The HISQ action is also designed to have small dicretisation errors. Using several light quark masses and lattice spacings allows us to control the chiral and continuum extrapolation and keep systematic errors in check.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2018
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