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Journal Article

Stress tensor fluctuations in de Sitter spacetime


Roura,  Albert
Quantum Gravity and Unified Theories, AEI Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Pérez-Nadal, G., Roura, A., & Verdaguer, E. (2010). Stress tensor fluctuations in de Sitter spacetime. Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics, 2010(03): 036. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2010/05/036.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-614E-C
The two-point function of the stress tensor operator of a quantum field in de Sitter spacetime is calculated for an arbitrary number of dimensions. We assume the field to be in the Bunch-Davies vacuum, and formulate our calculation in terms of de Sitter-invariant bitensors. Explicit results for free minimally coupled scalar fields with arbitrary mass are provided. We find long-range stress tensor correlations for sufficiently light fields (with mass m much smaller than the Hubble scale H), namely, the two-point function decays at large separations like an inverse power of the physical distance with an exponent proportional to m^2/H^2. In contrast, we show that for the massless case it decays at large separations like the fourth power of the physical distance. There is thus a discontinuity in the massless limit. As a byproduct of our work, we present a novel and simple geometric interpretation of de Sitter-invariant bitensors for pairs of points which cannot be connected by geodesics.