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Local varying-alpha theories

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Barrow, JD 
Magueijo, J 


jats:p In a recent paper, we demonstrated how the simplest model for varying-alpha may be interpreted as the effect of a dielectric material, generalized to be consistent with Lorentz invariance. Unlike normal dielectrics, such a medium cannot change the speed of light, and its dynamics obey a Klein–Gordon equation. This work immediately suggests an extension of the standard theory, even if we require compliance with Lorentz invariance. Instead of a wave equation, the dynamics may satisfy a local algebraic relation involving the permittivity and the properties of the electromagnetic (EM) field, in analogy with more conventional dielectric (but still preserving Lorentz invariance). We develop the formalism for such theories and investigate some phenomenological implications. The problem of the divergence of the classical self-energy can be solved, or at least softened, in this framework. Some interesting new cosmological solutions for the very early universe are found, including the possibility of a bounce, inflation and expansion with a loitering phase, all of which are induced by early variations in alpha. </jats:p>



Varying-alpha, early universe models, self-energy

Journal Title

Modern Physics Letters A

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World Scientific Pub Co Pte Lt
Science and Technology Facilities Council (ST/L000636/1)
JM and JDB acknowledge STFC consolidated grant support. JM was also supported by the Leverhulme Trust and the John Templeton Foundation.