RHIC helps answer the question, "How did the proton get its spin?"

ISU physicist John Lajoie is part of the PHENIX experiment at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC) located at the Brookhaven National Lab. Recent results from PHENIX show that the gluons' overall contribution to proton spin might be larger than the contribution from quarks.

For more information, see this US Dept. of Energy Office of Science Article, or this  BNL press release summarizing the PHENIX experiment's 2016 Phys. Rev. D. publication.