The 3D Entangled Structure of the Proton: Transverse Degrees of Freedom in QCD, Momenta, Spins and More

P. J. Mulders*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Light-front quantized quark and gluon states (partons) play a dominant role in high energy scattering processes. Initial state hadrons are mixed ensembles of partons, while produced pure partonic states appear as mixed ensembles of hadrons. The transition from collinear hard physics to the 3D structure including partonic transverse momenta is related to confinement which links color and spatial degrees of freedom. We outline ideas on emergent symmetries in the Standard Model and their connection to the 3D structure of hadrons. Wilson loops, including those with light-like Wilson lines such as used in the studies of transverse momentum dependent distribution functions may play a crucial role here, establishing a direct link between transverse spatial degrees of freedom and gluonic degrees of freedom.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalFew-Body Systems
Issue numberMarch
Early online date5 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2018

Bibliographical note

8 pages, invited talk presented at the Lightcone 2017 Workshop, 18-22 Sep 2017, Mumbai, India; prepared for proceedings to be published in Few Body Physics. - 2331-8422


Acknowledgements I acknowledge useful discussions with several colleagues at Nikhef and with Fabian Springer who worked on symmetry aspects as part of his MSc project. Except for the presentation at the Lightcone 2017 conference (Mumbai), the work was also presented at the INT 17-03 workshop on Hadron Tomography (INT, Seattle). This research is part of the FP7 EU “Ideas” programme QWORK (Contract 320389) of the European Research Council.

FundersFunder number
Seventh Framework Programme320389
European Research Council


    • hep-ph


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