Exit from inflation with a first-order phase transition and a gravitational wave blast
2015 (English)In: Physics Letters B, ISSN 0370-2693, Vol. 747, 446-453 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
In double-field inflation, which exploits two scalar fields, one of the fields rolls slowly during inflation whereas the other field is trapped in a meta-stable vacuum. The nucleation rate from the false vacuum to the true one becomes substantial enough that triggers a first order phase transition and ends inflation. We revisit the question of first order phase transition in an "extended" model of hybrid inflation, realizing the double-field inflationary scenario, and correctly identify the parameter space that leads to a first order phase transition at the end of inflation. We compute the gravitational wave profile which is generated during this first order phase transition. Assuming instant reheating, the peak frequency falls in the 1 GHz to 10 GHz frequency band and the amplitude varies in the range 10(-11) less than or similar to Omega(GW)h(2) <= 10(-8), depending on the value of the cosmological constant in the false vacuum. For a narrow band of vacuum energies, the first order phase transition can happen after the end of inflation via the violation of slow-roll, with a peak frequency that varies from 1 THz to 100 THz. For smaller values of cosmological constant, even though inflation can end via slow-roll violation, the universe gets trapped in a false vacuum whose energy drives a second phase of eternal inflation. This range of vacuum energies do not lead to viable inflationary models, unless the value of the cosmological constant is compatible with the observed value, M similar to 10(-3) eV.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015. Vol. 747, 446-453 p.
Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-260835DOI: 10.1016/j.physletb.2015.06.022ISI: 000358624800073OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-260835DiVA: diva2:848777