The Gravitational-Wave Spectrum of Preheating Inflation Models

Hal Finkel, Yale University


With the recent progress in gravitational-wave detector development there has been considerable interest in calculating gravitational-wave observables. Inflation has long been known to generate a stochastic background of gravitational waves, with a largely featureless spectrum. A popular termination mode for inflation models is a process known as preheating, which uses parametric resonance to transfer energy into a specific set of momentum modes of fields. It has recently been shown that a large class of inflation models involving preheating produce a potentially-detectable gravitational-wave signal peaked in the Hz-MHz range. These signals, caused by the “classical” density-perturbation quadrupole moment, do not have a scale-free spectrum and would yield important information on the phase transition at the end of inflation. Gravitational-wave spectra which have been generated by our new MPI-enabled code are presented. These spectra have a higher resolution than the previously published results.

Abstract Author(s): Hal Finkel