We reexamine the stochastic gravitational wave background resulting from inflation and its effect on the cosmic microwave background radiation (CMBR). Measurement by the Cosmic Background Explorer satellite of a CMBR quadrupole anisotropy places an upper limit on the vacuum energy during inflation of 5×1016 GeV. Gravitational waves from inflation could produce the entire observed signal if the vacuum energy during inflation was as small as 1.5×1016 GeV at the 95% confidence level. This coincides with recent estimates of grand unification scales inferred from renormalization-group arguments, for Supersymmetric grand unified theories. Further tests of this possibility are examined, based on analyzing the energy density associated with gravitational waves from inflation.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)