Are inflationary predictions sensitive to very high energy physics?
Speaker(s): Cliff Burgess
Abstract: It has been proposed that the successful inflationary description of density perturbations on cosmological scales is sensitive to the details of physics at extremely high(trans-Planckian) energies. I will critically analyse this idea by examining how inflationary predictions depend on higher-energy scales within a simple model where the higher-energy physics is well understood. The result is the best of all possible worlds: inflationary predictions are robust against the vast majority of high-energy effects, but*can* be sensitive to some effects in certain circumstances,in a way which does not violate ordinary notions of decoupling. This implies both that the comparison of inflationary predictions with CMB data is meaningful, and that it is also worth searching for small deviations from the standard results in the hopes of learning about very high energies.
Date: 16/04/2003 - 2:00 pm
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