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Gravitational waves from stochastic relativistic sources : primordial turbulence and magnetic fields

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Published in Physical Review. D. 2006, vol. 74, no. 063521, p. 18
Abstract The power spectrum of a homogeneous and isotropic stochastic variable, characterized by a finite correlation length, does not, in general, vanish on scales larger than the correlation scale. If the variable is a divergence-free vector field, we demonstrate that its power spectrum is blue on large scales. Accounting for this fact, we compute the gravitational waves induced by an incompressible turbulent fluid and by a causal magnetic field present in the early universe. The gravitational wave power spectra show common features: they are both blue on large scales, and they both peak at the correlation scale. However, the magnetic field can be treated as a coherent source and it is active for a long time. This results in a very effective conversion of magnetic energy in gravitational wave energy at horizon crossing. Turbulence instead acts as a source for gravitational waves over a time interval much shorter than a Hubble time, and the conversion into gravitational wave energy is much less effective. We also derive a strong constraint on the amplitude of a primordial magnetic field when the correlation length is much smaller than the horizon.
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CAPRINI, Chiara, DURRER, Ruth. Gravitational waves from stochastic relativistic sources : primordial turbulence and magnetic fields. In: Physical Review. D, 2006, vol. 74, n° 063521, p. 18. https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:947

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Deposited on : 2009-02-26

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