Title: Initial conditions for inflation Author: Konstantinos Dimopoulos, Michal Artymowski

A novel proposal is presented, which manages to overcome the initial conditions problem of inflation with a plateau. An earlier period of proto-inflation, beginning at Planck scale, accounts for the Universe expansion and arranges the required initial conditions for inflation on the plateu to commence. We show that, if proto-inflation is power-law, it does not suffer from any eternal inflationary stage. A simple model realisation is constructed in the context of alpha-attractors, which can both generate the inflationary plateau and the exponential slopes around it, necessary for the two inflation stages. Our mechanism allows to assume chaotic initial conditions at the Planck scale for proto-inflation, it is generic and it is shown to work without fine-tunings.

Title: Supersymmetry and Inflation Author: S. Ferrara, A. Sagnotti

Theories with elementary scalar degrees of freedom seem nowadays required for simple descriptions of the Standard Model and of the Early Universe. It is then natural to embed theories of inflation in supergravity, also in view of their possible ultraviolet completion in String Theory. After some general remarks on inflation in supergravity, we describe examples of minimal inflaton dynamics which are compatible with recent observations, including higher-curvature ones inspired by the Starobinsky model. We also discuss different scenarios for supersymmetry breaking during and after inflation, which include a revived role for non-linear realizations. In this spirit, we conclude with a discussion of the link, in four dimensions, between "brane supersymmetry breaking" and the super--Higgs effect in supergravity.

Title: Irruption of massive particle species during inflation Author: Michael A. Fedderke, Edward W. Kolb, Mark Wyman (Version v2)

All species of (non-conformally-coupled) particles are produced during inflation so long as their mass M is not too much larger than H, the expansion rate during inflation. It has been shown that if a particle species that is normally massive (M \gg H) couples to the inflaton field in such a way that its mass vanishes, or at least becomes small (M<H), for a particular value of the inflaton field, then not only are such particles produced, but an irruption of that particle species can occur during inflation. In this paper we analyse creation of a massive particle species during inflation in a variety of settings, paying particular attention to models which realize such an irruptive production mechanism.

Title: Planck 2015. XX. Constraints on inflation Author: Planck Collaboration: P. A. R. Ade, N. Aghanim, M. Arnaud, F. Arroja, M. Ashdown, J. Aumont, C. Baccigalupi, M. Ballardini, A. J. Banday, R. B. Barreiro, N. Bartolo, E. Battaner, K. Benabed, A. Benoit, A. Benoit-Levy, J.-P. Bernard, M. Bersanelli, P. Bielewicz, A. Bonaldi, L. Bonavera, J. R. Bond, J. Borrill, F. R. Bouchet, F. Boulanger, M. Bucher, C. Burigana, R. C. Butler, E. Calabrese, J.-F. Cardoso, A. Catalano, A. Challinor, A. Chamballu, R.-R. Chary, H. C. Chiang, P. R. Christensen, S. Church, D. L. Clements, S. Colombi, L. P. L. Colombo, C. Combet, D. Contreras, F. Couchot, A. Coulais, B. P. Crill, A. Curto, F. Cuttaia, L. Danese, R. D. Davies, R. J. Davis, P. de Bernardis, A. de Rosa, G. de Zotti, J. Delabrouille, F.-X. Desert, J. M. Diego, H. Dole, S. Donzelli, O. Dore, M. Douspis, et al. (186 additional authors not shown)

We present the implications for cosmic inflation of the Planck measurements of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) anisotropies in both temperature and polarization based on the full Planck survey. The Planck full mission temperature data and a first release of polarisation data on large angular scales measure the spectral index of curvature perturbations to be ns=0.968±0.006 and tightly constrain its scale dependence to dn_{s}/dlnk=-0.003±0.007 when combined with the Planck lensing likelihood. When the high-l polarisation data is included, the results are consistent and uncertainties are reduced. The upper bound on the tensor-to-scalar ratio is r0.002<0.11 (95% CL), consistent with the B-mode polarisation constraint r<0.12 (95% CL) obtained from a joint BICEP2/Keck Array and Planck analysis. These results imply that V(\phi) \propto \phi² and natural inflation are now disfavoured compared to models predicting a smaller tensor-to-scalar ratio, such as R² inflation. Three independent methods reconstructing the primordial power spectrum are investigated. The Planck data are consistent with adiabatic primordial perturbations. We investigate inflationary models producing an anisotropic modulation of the primordial curvature power spectrum as well as generalised models of inflation not governed by a scalar field with a canonical kinetic term. The 2015 results are consistent with the 2013 analysis based on the nominal mission data.

Title: Higgs inflation at the critical point Author: Fedor Bezrukov, Mikhail Shaposhnikov

Higgs inflation can occur if the Standard Model (SM) is a self-consistent effective field theory up to inflationary scale. This leads to a lower bound on the Higgs boson mass, M_h \geq M_{\text{crit}}. If Mh is more than a few hundreds of MeV above the critical value, the Higgs inflation predicts the universal values of inflationary indexes, r\simeq 0.003 and n_s\simeq 0.97, independently on the Standard Model parameters. We show that in the vicinity of the critical point Mcrit the inflationary indexes acquire an essential dependence on the mass of the top quark m_t and M_h. Thus the cosmological measurements of r and n_s different from the universal values lead to precise prediction of M_h and m_t.

Title: Multifield Inflation after Planck: Isocurvature Modes from Nonminimal Couplings Author: Katelin Schutz, Evangelos I. Sfakianakis, David I. Kaiser

Recent measurements by the Planck experiment of the power spectrum of temperature anisotropies in the cosmic microwave background radiation (CMB) reveal a deficit of power in low multipoles compared to the predictions from best-fit deltaCDM cosmology. The low-l anomaly may be explained by the presence of primordial isocurvature perturbations in addition to the usual adiabatic spectrum, and hence may provide the first robust evidence that early-universe inflation involved more than one scalar field. In this paper we explore the production of isocurvature perturbations in nonminimally coupled two-field inflation. We find that this class of models readily produces enough power in the isocurvature modes to account for the Planck low-l anomaly, while also providing excellent agreement with the other Planck results.

Title: Loop corrections and a new test of inflation Authors: Gianmassimo Tasinato, Christian T. Byrnes, Sami Nurmi, David Wands

Inflation is the leading paradigm for explaining the origin of primordial density perturbations and the observed temperature fluctuations of the cosmic microwave background. However many open questions remain, in particular whether one or more scalar fields were present during inflation and how they contributed to the primordial density perturbation. We propose a new observational test of whether multiple fields, or only one (not necessarily the inflaton) generated the perturbations. We show that our test, relating the bispectrum and trispectrum, is protected against loop corrections at all orders, unlike previous relations.

Title: The R_h=ct Universe Without Inflation Authors: Fulvio Melia

The horizon problem in the standard model of cosmology (LDCM) arises from the observed uniformity of the cosmic microwave background radiation, which has the same temperature everywhere (except for tiny, stochastic fluctuations), even in regions on opposite sides of the sky, which appear to lie outside of each other's causal horizon. Since no physical process propagating at or below lightspeed could have brought them into thermal equilibrium, it appears that the universe in its infancy required highly improbable initial conditions. In this paper, we examine this well-known problem by considering photon propagation through a Friedmann-Robertson-Walker (FRW) spacetime at a more fundamental level than has been attempted before, demonstrating that the horizon problem only emerges for a subset of FRW cosmologies, such as LCDM, that include an early phase of rapid deceleration. We show that the horizon problem is nonexistent for the recently introduced R_h=ct universe, obviating the principal motivation for the inclusion of inflation. We demonstrate through direct calculation that, in the R_h=ct universe, even opposite sides of the cosmos have remained causally connected to us - and to each other - from the very first moments in the universe's expansion. Therefore, within the context of the R_h=ct universe, the hypothesized inflationary epoch from t=10^{-35} seconds to 10^{-32} seconds was not needed to fix this particular "problem", though it may still provide benefits to cosmology for other reasons.

We propose a new inflation model in which a gauge singlet inflaton turns into the Higgs condensate after inflation. The inflationary path is characterised by a moduli space of supersymmetric vacua spanned by the inflaton and Higgs field. The inflation energy scale is related to the soft supersymmetry breaking, and the Hubble parameter during inflation is smaller than the gravitino mass. The initial condition for the successful inflation is naturally realised by the pre-inflation in which the Higgs plays a role of the waterfall field.

Title: Observable Spectra of Induced Gravitational Waves from Inflation Authors: Laila Alabidi, Kazunori Kohri, Misao Sasaki, Yuuiti Sendouda

Measuring the primordial power spectrum on small scales is a powerful tool in inflation model building, yet constraints from Cosmic Microwave Background measurements alone are insufficient to place bounds stringent enough to be appreciably effective. For the very small scale spectrum, those which subtend angles of less than 0.3 degrees on the sky, an upper bound can be extracted from the astrophysical constraints on the possible production of primordial black holes in the early universe. A recently discovered observational by-product of an enhanced power spectrum on small scales, induced gravitational waves, have been shown to be within the range of proposed space based gravitational wave detectors; such as NASA's LISA and BBO detectors, and the Japanese DECIGO detector. In this paper we explore the impact such a detection would have on models of inflation known to lead to an enhanced power spectrum on small scales, namely the Hilltop-type and running mass models. We find that the Hilltop-type model can produce observable induced gravitational waves within the range of BBO and DECIGO for integral and fractional powers of the potential within a reasonable number of e-folds. We also find that the running mass model can produce a spectrum within the range of these detectors, but require that inflation terminates after an unreasonably small number of e-folds. Finally, we argue that if the thermal history of the Universe were to accommodate such a small number of e-folds the Running Mass Model can produce Primordial Black Holes within a mass range compatible with Dark Matter, i.e. within a mass range 10^{20} g< M_{BH}<10^{27} g.