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Preheating in the Standard Model with the Higgs-Inflaton coupled to gravity

AuthorsGarcía-Bellido, Juan ; García Figueroa, Daniel ; Rubio-Peña, Javier
Issue Date31-Mar-2009
PublisherAmerican Physical Society
CitationPhysical Review - Section D - Particles and Fields 79(6): 063531.1-063531.22 (2009)
AbstractWe study the details of preheating in an inflationary scenario in which the standard model Higgs, strongly nonminimally coupled to gravity, plays the role of the inflaton. We find that the Universe does not reheat immediately through perturbative decays, but rather initiates a complex process in which perturbative and nonperturbative effects are mixed. The Higgs condensate starts oscillating around the minimum of its potential, producing W and Z gauge bosons nonperturbatively, due to violation of the so-called adiabaticity condition. However, during each semioscillation, the created gauge bosons partially decay (perturbatively) into fermions. The decay of the gauge bosons prevents the development of parametric resonance, since bosons cannot accumulate significantly at the beginning. However, the energy transferred to the decay products of the bosons is not enough to reheat the Universe, so after about a hundred oscillations, the resonance effects will eventually dominate over the perturbative decays. Around the same time (or slightly earlier), backreaction from the gauge bosons into the Higgs condensate will also start to be significant. Soon afterwards, the Universe is filled with the remnant condensate of the Higgs and a nonthermal distribution of fermions and bosons (those of the standard model), which redshift as radiation and matter, respectively. We compute the distribution of the energy budget among all the species present at the time of backreaction. From there until thermalization, the evolution of the system is highly nonlinear and nonperturbative, and will require a careful study via numerical simulations.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevD.79.063531
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