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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Inflationary paradigm after Planck 2013

  • Author(s): Guth, AH
  • Kaiser, DI
  • Nomura, Y
  • et al.

Models of cosmic inflation posit an early phase of accelerated expansion of the universe, driven by the dynamics of one or more scalar fields in curved spacetime. Though detailed assumptions about fields and couplings vary across models, inflation makes specific, quantitative predictions for several observable quantities, such as the flatness parameter (Ωk= 1 - Ω) and the spectral tilt of primordial curvature perturbations (ns-1=dlnPR/dlnk), among others-predictions that match the latest observations from the Planck satellite to very good precision. In the light of data from Planck as well as recent theoretical developments in the study of eternal inflation and the multiverse, we address recent criticisms of inflation by Ijjas, Steinhardt, and Loeb. We argue that their conclusions rest on several problematic assumptions, and we conclude that cosmic inflation is on a stronger footing than ever before. © 2014 The Authors.

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