Date of Award

Winter 2013

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Director

Stephen Bültmann

Committee Member

Leposava Vuskovic

Committee Member

Gail Dodge

Committee Member

Anatoly Radyushkin

Committee Member

Tal Ezer


Elastic proton-proton (pp) scattering is one of the most fundamental processes in nature and yet, it is one of the most difficult to describe. There are two interactions involved in this process: electromagnetic (Coulomb) and hadronic (strong) interactions. Underlying exchange mechanisms of these two interactions are the virtual photon and the Pomeron exchange, respectively. The difficulty of elastic pp scattering arises from the fact that the nature of the Pomeron and its exchange are not well understood and need a theoretical approach, which is still under development.

At the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) at Brookhaven National Lab (BNL) we are studying the hadronic interaction via the dynamics of high-energy ppcollisions using the Solenoidal Tracker At RHIC (STAR) detector. The "Physics With Tagged Forward Protons At STAR" experiment, formerly known as the "pp2pp" experiment, is a part of STAR and it successfully conducted measurements of elastic scattering observables by the use of its forward particle detectors, known as Roman pots.

In this dissertation I present the measurement of polarized pp elastic scattering at RHIC. I describe the "pp2pp at STAR" experiment focusing on elastic scattering observables from the data taken in Run9. I report the result of the experimental slope parameter B of the diffractive peak of the elastic cross-section at the center-of-mass energy √s = 200 GeV in the four-momentum transfer squared t range 0.006 ≤ |t| ≤ 0.02 (GeV/c)2 . I also present data analysis techniques and Monte Carlo simulations developed for the analysis and improvement of the detector performance, correction of the recorded experimental data and an estimate of systematic errors of this measurement.


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