Quantum Field Theory of Inflation for Pedestrians

Quantum Field Theory of Inflation for Pedestrians
Nemanja Kaloper, University of California, Davis
Date and time: Wed, Apr 11, 2012 - 4:00pm
Refreshments at 3:40pm
Location: Hasbrouck 124
Category: Departmental Colloquium
Abstract:

Inflation is the leading paradigm for explaining the origin, age, smoothness, and observed structures in the Universe. It relies on simple concepts of local quantum field theory coupled to gravity. I will review its basic tenets, and then explain in simplest terms how `everyday' quantum phenomena, when taking place in a space with curvature, produce inflation and its signatures. Finally, I will review some recent progress in constructing large field inflationary models, and the chances for their experimental tests.