UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

The conformal anomaly and dark energy : how the conformal anomaly can introduce an IR scale into the vacuum energy Thomas, Evan Cameron


We suggest that the solution to the cosmological vacuum energy puzzle may come from the infrared sector of the low energy effective quantum field theory of gravity, where the impact of the conformal anomaly is of the upmost importance. We proceed by introducing two auxiliary fields, which describe the quantum state by the specifications of their macroscopic IR boundary conditions, in contrast to UV quantum effects. Our investigation aims at finding a realistic cosmological solution which interprets the observed dark energy as a well defined deficit in the zero point energy density of the Universe. The energy density arises from a ’phase transition’ that alters the quantum ground state, wherein we give a precise ’renormalization’ scheme and definition for a ’renormalized vacuum energy’ that we identify with the dark energy.

Item Media

Item Citations and Data


Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported