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.
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