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A scale-dependent power asymmetry from isocurvature perturbations

Erickcek, Adrienne L. and Hirata, Christopher M. and Kamionkowski, Marc (2009) A scale-dependent power asymmetry from isocurvature perturbations. Physical Review D, 80 (8). Art. No. 083507 . ISSN 1550-7998.

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If the hemispherical power asymmetry observed in the cosmic microwave background (CMB) on large angular scales is attributable to a superhorizon curvaton fluctuation, then the simplest model predicts that the primordial density fluctuations should be similarly asymmetric on all smaller scales. The distribution of high-redshift quasars was recently used to constrain the power asymmetry on scales k ≃ 1.5h Mpc^(-1), and the upper bound on the amplitude of the asymmetry was found to be a factor of 6 smaller than the amplitude of the asymmetry in the CMB. We show that it is not possible to generate an asymmetry with this scale dependence by changing the relative contributions of the inflaton and curvaton to the adiabatic power spectrum. Instead, we consider curvaton scenarios in which the curvaton decays after dark matter freezes out, thus generating isocurvature perturbations. If there is a superhorizon fluctuation in the curvaton field, then the rms amplitude of these perturbations will be asymmetric, and the asymmetry will be most apparent on large angular scales in the CMB. We find that it is only possible to generate the observed asymmetry in the CMB while satisfying the quasar constraint if the curvaton's contribution to the total dark matter density is small, but nonzero. The model also requires that the majority of the primordial power comes from fluctuations in the inflaton field. Future observations and analyses of the CMB will test this model because the power asymmetry generated by this model has a specific spectrum, and the model requires that the current upper bounds on isocurvature power are nearly saturated.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription PublisherArticle
Hirata, Christopher M.0000-0002-2951-4932
Kamionkowski, Marc0000-0001-7018-2055
Additional Information:© 2009 American Physical Society. Received 3 July 2009; published 7 October 2009. We thank H. K. Eriksen for helpful correspondence. A. E. and M. K. are supported by DoE Contract No. DEFG03-92-ER40701 and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. C. H. is supported by DoE Contract No. DEFG03-02-ER40701, the National Science Foundation under Contract No. AST-0807337, and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Group:TAPIR, Moore Center for Theoretical Cosmology and Physics
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Department of Energy (DOE)DE-FG03-92-ER40701
Gordon and Betty Moore FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:8
Classification Code:PACS: 98.80.Cq; 98.70.Vc; 98.80.Bp.
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20091124-151956283
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Official Citation:A scale-dependent power asymmetry from isocurvature perturbations Adrienne L. Erickcek, Christopher M. Hirata, and Marc Kamionkowski, Phys. Rev. D 80, 083507 (2009), DOI:10.1103/PhysRevD.80.083507
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:16799
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:13 Dec 2009 02:24
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 01:17

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