Cosmological Perturbations Through the Big Bang
Several scenarios have been proposed in which primordial perturbations could originate from quantum vacuum fluctuations in a phase corresponding to a collapse phase (in an Einstein frame) preceding the Big Bang. I briefly review three models which could produce scale-invariant spectra during collapse: (1) curvature perturbations during pressureless collapse, (2) axion field perturbations in a pre big bang scenario, and (3) tachyonic fields during multiple-field ekpyrotic collapse. In the separate universes picture one can derive generalised perturbation equations to describe the evolution of large scale perturbations through a semi-classical bounce, assuming a large-scale limit in which inhomogeneous perturbations can be described by locally homogeneous patches. For adiabatic perturbations there exists a conserved curvature perturbation on large scales, but isocurvature perturbations can change the curvature perturbation through the non-adiabatic pressure perturbation on large scales. Different models for the origin of large scale structure lead to different observational predictions, including gravitational waves and non-Gaussianity.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: June 1, 2009
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