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Author Davis, M. ♦ Boynton, P.
Source United States Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information
Content type Text
Language English
Subject Keyword CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS ♦ COSMIC RADIATION ♦ ANISOTROPY ♦ UNIVERSE ♦ COSMOLOGICAL MODELS ♦ BACKGROUND RADIATION ♦ COSMOLOGY ♦ DISTURBANCES ♦ FLUCTUATIONS ♦ STATISTICS ♦ ULTRALOW TEMPERATURE ♦ IONIZING RADIATIONS ♦ MATHEMATICAL MODELS ♦ MATHEMATICS ♦ RADIATIONS ♦ VARIATIONS ♦ Astrophysics & Cosmology- Cosmology ♦ Astrophysics & Cosmology- Cosmic Radiation
Abstract The as yet unobserved small-scale anisotropy in the microwave background radiation is expected to provide a fossil record of inhomogeneity in the early universe present during the era of hydrogen recombination. Interpretation of this record depends on understanding the coupling between matter and radiation at that remote time. We investigate fluctuations in the background radiation temperature for the case of minimal coupling: purely isothermal matter preturbations. We argue that this approach, together with a power law description of primordial density perturbations inferred from the spectrum of mass associations observed at the current epoch, allows the computation of an unambiguous lower bound to observable rms temperature fluctuations. Futhermore, our description of the fluctuations in terms of an angular autocovariance function indicates substantial correlation extending well beyond angular scales associated with corresponding fluctuations in the matter distribution, thereby compounding the difficulty of observation. Even so, in the absence of significant reionization, these fluctuations should be detectable, although at a level considerably below current observational limits.
Educational Use Research
Learning Resource Type Article
Publisher Date 1980-04-15
Publisher Department Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Publisher Place United States
Journal Astrophys. J.
Volume Number 237
Issue Number 2
Organization Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics


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