On Scattering by Nuclei at High Energies
We study how nucleon-nucleon correlations influence high energy scattering by nuclei. Using the multiple scattering theory of Kerman, McManus, and Thaler we formulate the scattering problem in terms of an infinite system of coupled equations. For the calculation of elastic scattering we propose replacing the infinite system by a pair of coupled equations, containing the elastic channel and another effective one which carries all inelastic strength. The coupling potential is proportional to the nuclear pair correlation function and a first approximation to this potential is obtained. These equations are accurate to the extent that the pair correlations and not higher order correlations are important. There are no restrictions to forward scattering norare any “on the energy shell” approximations made. In order to obtain insight into the structure of the many-channel S matrix for high energies, the infinite system of coupled equations is solved by semi-classical methods and explicit formulae for the S-matrix elements as a function of various potentials and the nuclear pair correlation function are obtained. We show how properties of excited target states may complicate a reliable extraction of correlations in high energy scattering by nuclei. A close relation between our semi-classical solution and Glauber’s multiple scattering is established. A numerical study of high-energy nucleonnucleus scattering using the methods developed in this paper is under way.