Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)




David Richards

Committee Member

David Armstrong

Committee Member

Jozef Dudek

Committee Member

Carl Carlson

Committee Member

Anatoly Radyushkin


The interpretation of (semi-)inclusive and certain exclusive scattering processes relies on the factorization of hard parton level cross sections from long-range and non-perturbative parton correlations. The familiar Parton Distribution Functions (PDFs) and Generalized Parton Distributions quantify the non-perturbative dynamics in these situations and address a number of key questions surrounding the structure of hadrons. A certain class of matrix elements accessible in lattice QCD, so called Lattice Cross Sections, have been shown to factorize into these collinear distributions in a manner akin to the factorization of hadronic cross sections. In the short-distance regime, matrix elements of space-like separated two-current operators and parton bilinears can be expressed as the convolution of perturbative coefficient functions and the PDFs. Matrix elements of this type are isolated in the pion and nucleon, each offering a glimpse of the unpolarized valence quark content of these phenomenologically important hadronic states. The calculations within the nucleon represent the first application of the distillation spatial smearing paradigm to the collinear structure of hadrons, and is found to offer higher precision data compared to similar calculations in the literature. A novel method to obtain PDFs from these lattice data, while simultaneously controlling systematic effects, is developed and applied to the nucleon dataset. The coordinate space factorization of space-like separated parton bilinears has also recently been extended to include Generalized Parton Distributions. Preliminary results in off-forward nucleon matrix elements using distillation are explored.


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