A Consistency Relation for Single-Field Inflation with Power Spectrum Oscillations


We derive a theoretical upper bound on the oscillation frequency in the scalar perturbation power spectrum of single-field inflation. Oscillations are most naturally produced by modified vacua with varying phase. When this phase changes rapidly, it induces strong interactions between the scalar fluctuations. If the interactions are sufficiently strong the theory cannot be evaluated using perturbation theory, hence imposing a limit on the oscillation frequency. This complements the bound found by Weinberg governing the validity of effective field theory. The generalized consistency relation also allows one to use squeezed configurations of higher-point correlations to place constraints on the power spectrum oscillations.

Mark Jackson, Gary Shiu

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