[Desplanques, B.] Univ Grenoble 1, LPSC, CNRS, INPG,IN2P3, F-38026 Grenoble, France
; [Dong, Y. B.] Chinese Acad Sci, Inst High Energy Phys, Beijing 100049, Peoples R China
; [Dong, Y. B.] CAS, Theoret Phys Ctr Sci Facil TPCSF, Beijing 100049, Peoples R China
The role of Poincare covariant space-time translations is investigated in the case of the pseudoscalar-meson charge form factors. It is shown that this role extends beyond the standard energy-momentum conservation, which is accounted for in all relativistic quantum mechanics calculations. It implies constraints that have been largely ignored until now but should be fulfilled to ensure the full Poincare covariance. The violation of these constraints, which is more or less important depending on the form of relativistic quantum mechanics that is employed, points to the validity of using a single-particle current, which is generally assumed in calculations of form factors. In short, these constraints concern the relation of the momentum transferred to the constituents to the one transferred to the system. How to account for the related constraints, as well as restoring the equivalence of different relativistic quantum mechanics approaches in estimating form factors, is discussed. Some conclusions relative to the underlying dynamics are given in the pion case.