Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Quantum Chromodynamics, Hadrons, Nuclear Structure, Light-Cone, Fock State Methods, QCD


In principle, quantum chromodynamics provides a fundamental description of hadronic and nuclear structure and dynamics in terms of their elementary quark and gluon degrees of freedom. In practice, the direct application of QCD to reactions involving the structure of hadrons is complex because of the interplay of nonperturbative effects such as color confinement and multi-quark coherence. A crucial tool in analyzing such phenomena is the use of relativistic light-cone quantum mechanics and Fock state methods to provide tractable and consistent treatments of relativistic many-body systems. We begin with a brief introduction to light-cone field theory, stressing how it may allow the derivation of a constituent picture, analogous to the constituent quark model. The Fock state representation includes all quantum fluctuations of the hadron wavefunction, including far off-shell configurations such as intrinsic charm and, in the case of nuclei, hidden color. The Fock state components of the hadron with small transverse size, which dominate hard exclusive reactions, have small color dipole moments. Thus QCD predicts minimal absorptive corrections, i.e., color transparency for quasi-elastic exclusive reactions in nuclear targets at large momentum transfer. In other applications, such as the calculation of the axial, magnetic, and quadrupole moments of light nuclei, the QCD Fock state description provides new insights which go well beyond traditional hadronic and nuclear physics.

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Original Citation

Brodsky, S.J. & Robertson, D.G. (1995) Light-cone quantization and QCD phenomenology. in S. Bass, P.A.M. Guichon. Gif-sur-Yvette.Confinement Physics: Proceedings, Frontieres, 1996. Presented at ELFE (European Laboratory for Electrons) Summer School on Confinement Physics, Cambridge, England, 22-28 Jul 1995. e-Print: hep-ph/9511374


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Peer Reviewed


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Physics Commons



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