Effective Theory for the Cosmological Generation of Structure
The current understanding of structure formation in the early universe is mainly built on a magnification of quantum fluctuations in an initial vacuum state during an early phase of accelerated universe expansion. One usually describes this process by solving equations for a quantum state of matter on a given expanding background space-time, followed by decoherence arguments for the emergence of classical inhomogeneities from the quantum fluctuations. Here, we formulate the coupling of quantum matter fields to a dynamical gravitational background in an effective framework which allows the inclusion of back-reaction effects. It is shown how quantum fluctuations couple to classical inhomogeneities and can thus manage to generate cosmic structure in an evolving background. Several specific effects follow from a qualitative analysis of the back-reaction, including a likely reduction of the overall amplitude of power in the cosmic microwave background, the occurrence of small non-Gaussianities, and a possible suppression of power for odd modes on large scales without parity violation.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: June 1, 2008
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