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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Evolving Dark Energy with w =/ -1


Theories of evolving quintessence are constructed that generically lead to deviations from the w = -1 prediction of non-evolving dark energy. The small mass scale that governs evolution, m_\phi \approx 10^-33 eV, is radiatively stable, and the "Why Now?'' problem is solved. These results rest crucially on seesaw cosmology: in broad outline, fundamental physics and cosmology can be understood from only two mass scales, the weak scale, v, and the Planck scale, M. Requiring a scale of dark energy \rho_DE^1/4 governed by v^2/M, and a radiatively stable evolution rate m_\phi given by v^4/M^3, leads to a distinctive form for the equation of state w(z) that follows from a cosine quintessence potential. An explicit hidden axion model is constructed. Dark energy resides in the potential of the axion field which is generated by a new QCD-like force that gets strong at the scale \Lambda \approx v^2/M \approx \rho_DE^1/4. The evolution rate is given by a second seesaw that leads to the axion mass, m_\phi \approx \Lambda^2/f, with f \approx M.

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