Initial conditions for cosmological perturbations

Abhay Ashtekar, Brajesh Gupt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Penrose proposed that the big bang singularity should be constrained by requiring that the Weyl curvature vanishes there. The idea behind this past hypothesis is attractive because it constrains the initial conditions for the universe in geometric terms and is not confined to a specific early universe paradigm. However, the precise statement of Penrose's hypothesis is tied to classical space-times and furthermore restricts only the gravitational degrees of freedom. These are encapsulated only in the tensor modes of the commonly used cosmological perturbation theory. Drawing inspiration from the underlying idea, we propose a quantum generalization of Penrose's hypothesis using the Planck regime in place of the big bang, and simultaneously incorporating tensor as well as scalar modes. Initial conditions selected by this generalization constrain the universe to be as homogeneous and isotropic in the Planck regime as permitted by the Heisenberg uncertainty relations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number035004
JournalClassical and Quantum Gravity
Volume34
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 9 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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