Exclusive leptoproduction of \(\rho^0\) mesons from hydrogen at intermediate virtual photon energies
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Measurements of the cross section for exclusive virtual-photoproduction of \(\rho^0\) mesons from hydrogen are reported. The data were collected by the HERMES experiment using 27.5 GeV positrons incident on a hydrogen gas target in the HERA storage ring. The invariant mass W of the photon-nucleon system ranges from 4.0 to 6.0 GeV, while the negative squared four-momentum \(Q^2\) of the virtual photon varies from 0.7 to 5.0 GeV\(^2\). The present data together with most of the previous data in the intermediate W-domain are well described by a model that infers the W-dependence of the cross section from the dependence on the Bjorken scaling variable x of the unpolarized structure function for deep-inelastic scattering. In addition, a model calculation based on Off-Forward Parton Distributions gives a fairly good account of the longitudinal component of the \(\rho^0\) production cross section for \(Q^2>2\) GeV\(^2\).
KeywordsStructure Function Invariant Mass Production Cross Production Cross Section Parton Distribution
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