Date of Award

Fall 2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Director

Stephen Bueltmann

Committee Member

Sabastian Kuhn

Committee Member

Rocco Schiavilla

Committee Member

Alex Godunov

Committee Member

Jennifer Poutsma


Deeply virtual exclusive processes offer a unique opportunity to study the internal structure of the nucleon and nuclei. The goal of this work is to extract the beam-spin asymmetry in deeply virtual coherent neutral pion electroproduction, e4He → e′4He′π0, using the CLAS detector in the experimental Hall B at Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility. The data were collected in 2009 with a 6 GeV longitudinally polarized electron beam impinging on a 30 cm long, 6 atm Helium-4 gaseous target. In order to ensure that the process is coherent, a new Radial Time Projection Chamber was used to detect and identify low energy recoil α-particles. The Beam Spin Asymmetry in the coherent deep exclusive regime was measured at Q2 = 1.50 GeV2, XB = 0.18 and −t = 0.14 GeV2. The measured asymmetry has an amplitude of 10%±5% and has the opposite sign compared the asymmetry measured for π0 production on the proton.


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