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Gravitational waves at interferometer scales and primordial black holes in axion inflation

Oct 12, 2016

We study the prospects of detection at terrestrial and space interferometers of a stochastic gravitational wave background which can be produced in models of axion inflation.

This potential signal, and the development of these interferometers, open a new window on inflation on scales much smaller than those currently probed with Cosmic Microwave Background and Large Scale Structure measurements. The sourced signal generated in axion inflation is an ideal candidate for such searches, since it naturally grows at small scales, and it has specific properties (chirality and non-gaussianity) that can distinguish it from an astrophysical background.

We study under which conditions such a signal can be produced at an observable level, without the simultaneous overproduction of scalar perturbations in excess of what is allowed by the primordial black hole limits.

We also explore the possibility that scalar perturbations generated in a modified version of this model may provide a distribution of primordial black holes compatible with the current bounds, that can act as a seeds of the present black holes in the universe.

Link to paper