Date of Award

Summer 2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Director

Stepan Stepanyan

Committee Member

Gail Dodge

Committee Member

Stephen Bueltmann

Committee Member

Colm Whelan

Committee Member

Steven Pascal


The structure of the proton is comprised of quarks and a sea of gluons. A mechanism that can extract the characteristics of the hidden-color correlations of the nuclear wavefunction is the production of charm near threshold. Due to the fact that momentum transfer is large near threshold in the production of J/ψ , all three valence quarks must act coherently to ex- change energy for the reaction to occur. Models have been developed to predict the nature of J/ψ photoproduction at these specific energies. These include production mechanisms with the two-gluon and three-gluon exchanges. The transferred momentum dependence of the differential cross sections are sensitive to the gluonic form factors, which describe the distribution of color charge in the proton. The CLAS12 detector is capable of measuring J/ψ photoproduction at the energy range close to the threshold. Work showcased in this dissertation encompasses the preparation of the CLAS12 experiments, including the optimization of tracking reconstruction through the study of the Torus magnetic field. In terms of software, contributions were made to the CLAS12 Event Builder, a key stage of reconstruction where event-by-event information is summarized for efficient data analysis. After the run periods were successfully completed, analysis of the RG-A data commenced and an analysis framework was developed to measure the differential and total cross sections of J/ψ photoproduction in Hall B.


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Included in

Nuclear Commons