Academic Commons

Theses Doctoral

Negative Modes in Vacuum Decay

Lee, Hak Joon

A vacuum, a classically stable state, can decay to another vacuum by virtue of quantum tunneling. Although vacuum decay is an interesting topic itself in field theory, when it combines with gravity, it has wider applications and plays an essential role to understand the very early universe. The semi-classical solution of vacuum decay is well-described by the WKB approximation both in flat space and in curved space. Meanwhile, if we consider the configuration space of fields, we encounter many kinds of problems related with gravitational fields since the mode spectrum in curved space turns out to have an infinite number of negative modes in a de Sitter background. Despite of infinitely many negative modes, the regime in the weak gravity limit can be smoothly connected to flat space. To understand this, I discuss the nature of vacuum decay and various topics about negative modes in this thesis.

Files

  • thumnail for LEE_columbia_0054D_12192.pdf LEE_columbia_0054D_12192.pdf binary/octet-stream 1.5 MB Download File

More About This Work

Academic Units
Physics
Thesis Advisors
Weinberg, Erick J.
Degree
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
July 7, 2014
Academic Commons provides global access to research and scholarship produced at Columbia University, Barnard College, Teachers College, Union Theological Seminary and Jewish Theological Seminary. Academic Commons is managed by the Columbia University Libraries.