A set of measurements of azimuthal asymmetries in the production of pairs of identified hadrons in deep-inelastic scattering of muons on transversely polarised 6LiD (deuteron) and NH3 (proton) targets is presented. All available data collected in the years 2003–2004 and 2007/2010 with the COMPASS spectrometer using a muon beam of 160GeV/c at the CERN SPS were analysed. The asymmetries provide access to the transversity distribution functions via a fragmentation function that in principle may be independently obtained from e+e annihilation data. Results are presented, discussed and compared to existing measurements as well as to model predictions. Asymmetries of π+π pairs measured with the proton target as a function of the Bjorken scaling variable are sizeable in the range x>0.032, indicating non-vanishing transversity distribution and di-hadron interference fragmentation functions. As already pointed out by several authors, the small asymmetries of π+π measured on the 6LiD target can be interpreted as indication for a cancellation of u and d-quark transversity distributions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number138155
JournalPhysics Letters B
StatePublished - 10 Oct 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Collins effect
  • Di-hadron
  • Fragmentation
  • Spin
  • Transversity


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