Spacetime dynamics of a Higgs vacuum instability during inflation [electronic resource].
- Washington, D.C. : United States. Dept. of Energy. High Energy Physics Division, 2017. and Oak Ridge, Tenn. : Distributed by the Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Dept. of Energy
- Physical Description:
- Article numbers 023,526 : digital, PDF file
- Additional Creators:
- SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, United States. Department of Energy. High Energy Physics Division, and United States. Department of Energy. Office of Scientific and Technical Information
- Restrictions on Access:
- Free-to-read Unrestricted online access
- A remarkable prediction of the Standard Model is that, in the absence of corrections lifting the energy density, the Higgs potential becomes negative at large field values. If the Higgs field samples this part of the potential during inflation, the negative energy density may locally destabilize the spacetime. Here, we use numerical simulations of the Einstein equations to study the evolution of inflation-induced Higgs fluctuations as they grow towards the true (negative-energy) minimum. Our simulations show that forming a single patch of true vacuum in our past light cone during inflation is incompatible with the existence of our Universe; the boundary of the true vacuum region grows outward in a causally disconnected manner from the crunching interior, which forms a black hole. We also find that these black hole horizons may be arbitrarily elongated—even forming black strings—in violation of the hoop conjecture. Furthermore, by extending the numerical solution of the Fokker-Planck equation to the exponentially suppressed tails of the field distribution at large field values, we derive a rigorous correlation between a future measurement of the tensor-to-scalar ratio and the scale at which the Higgs potential must receive stabilizing corrections in order for the Universe to have survived inflation until today.
- Published through SciTech Connect., 01/31/2017., "fermilab-pub--16-250-t", " mctp--16-15", " arxiv:1607.00381", "1473616", Physical Review D 95 2 ISSN 2470-0010; PRVDAQ AM, and William E. East; John Kearney; Bibhushan Shakya; Hojin Yoo; Kathryn M. Zurek.
- Funding Information:
- AC02-07CH11359, SC0007859, SC0011719, AC02-05CH11231, and PHY-1066293
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