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Probing neutrino physics with a self-consistent treatment of the weak decoupling, nucleosynthesis, and photon decoupling epochs

  • Author(s): Grohs, E
  • Fuller, GM
  • Kishimoto, CT
  • Paris, MW
  • et al.
Abstract

We show that a self-consistent and coupled treatment of the weak decoupling, big bang nucleosynthesis, and photon decoupling epochs can be used to provide new insights and constraints on neutrino sector physics from high-precision measurements of light element abundances and Cosmic Microwave Background observables. Implications of beyond-standard-model physics in cosmology, especially within the neutrino sector, are assessed by comparing predictions against five observables: the baryon energy density, helium abundance, deuterium abundance, effective number of neutrinos, and sum of the light neutrino mass eigenstates. We give examples for constraints on dark radiation, neutrino rest mass, lepton numbers, and scenarios for light and heavy sterile neutrinos.

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