Renormalization of Vacuum Energy

Epstein, Kenneth J.
June 2007
Physics Essays;Jun2007, Vol. 20 Issue 2, p334
Academic Journal
The absurdly large vacuum energy density ρv predicted by quantum field theory is reduced by a negative cosmological constant Λ < 0 to a renormalized vacuum energy ρv' ≡ ρv + Λ/(8 π), which can be positive or negative. Three inflation eras, due to three symmetry breakings, are explained by large positive values of ρv'. The big bang is explained as a singularly inflationary symmetry breaking that ended the Planck era and began the grand unified era. Accelerating expansion in the present era is explained by a small intergalactic ρv' > 0 interpreted as dark energy. It is then shown how intragalactic ρv' < 0 can simulate dark matter by creating a generalized Schwarzschild--anti-de Sitter metric with a gravitational harmonic oscillator potential that Newtonian physics attributes to a uniform halo of dark matter.


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