Recently, we introduced an ekpyrotic model based on a single, canonical scalar field that generates nearly scale-invariant curvature fluctuations through a purely "adiabatic mechanism" in which the background evolution is a dynamical attractor. Despite the starkly different physical mechanism for generating fluctuations, the two-point function is identical to inflation. In this paper, we further explore this concept, focusing in particular on issues of non-Gaussianity and quantum corrections. We find that the degeneracy with inflation is broken at three-point level: for the simplest case of an exponential potential, the three-point amplitude is strongly scale dependent, resulting in a breakdown of perturbation theory on small scales. However, we show that the perturbative breakdown can be circumvented-and all issues raised in Linde et al. (arXiv:0912.0944) can be addressed-by altering the potential such that power is suppressed on small scales. The resulting range of nearly scale-invariant, Gaussian modes can be as much as 12 e-folds, enough to span the scales probed by microwave background and large-scale structure observations. On smaller scales, the spectrum is not scale invariant but is observationally acceptable.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||Physical Review D - Particles, Fields, Gravitation and Cosmology|
|State||Published - Jun 1 2011|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics
- Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)