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Neutrinos in Cosmology and Particle Physics

Wu, Jun (2012) Neutrinos in Cosmology and Particle Physics. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh.

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    Abstract

    This thesis discusses two independent research topics. We first study keV sterile neutrinos as a Warm Dark Matter (WDM) candidate, focusing on their production at temperatures of the electroweak scale and the linear structure growth of WDM particles with arbitrary distribution functions and masses of keV scale. At temperatures of the electroweak scale, the medium effect modifies the mixing angle between sterile and active neutrinos, introducing two narrow Mikheev-Smirnov-Wolfenstein (MSW) resonances that break adiabaticity and enhance the non-thermal production of sterile neutrinos at small momenta. One of the two MSW resonances is in the absence of a lepton asymmetry and occurs only at temperatures around the electroweak scale. By solving the linearized collision-less Boltzmann equation, we obtain a semi-analytical expression of the matter power spectrum for WDM particles with arbitrary distributions agreeing within a few percent error with results from Boltzmann codes. This matter power spectrum depends on the horizon size at matter-radiation equality and the free streaming wave vector kfs, function of mass and distribution of WDM particles. We discover WDM acoustic oscillations at small scales about k>=2k_fs and an Integrated Sachs-Wolfe (ISW) effect in the Radiation Dominant (RD) era which enhances the matter power spectrum for k<=k_fs. A quasi-degeneracy between the mass and distribution function of WDM on the matter power spectrum is identified, suggesting an inherent ambiguity of Lyman-alpha analysis to constrain WDM parameters. Secondly, based on the observation that neutrinos produced from decay via the charge current interaction are entangled with the corresponding charged leptons, we re-investigate the theory of neutrino oscillations with the focus of the dynamics of the entangled state. We study the dynamics of entanglement and dis-entanglement explicitly in time, which leads to non-conventional expressions for neutrino oscillation amplitudes and probabilities suggesting possible corrections for short baseline neutrino oscillation experiments. By applying this method to the GSI anomaly, we unambiguously show that the GSI anomaly is not a consequence of neutrino oscillations.


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    Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
    ETD Committee:
    ETD Committee TypeCommittee MemberEmail
    Committee ChairBoyanovsky, Danielboyan@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberHolman, Richardrh4a@andrew.cmu.edu
    Committee MemberKosowsky, Authurkosowsky+@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberLeibovich, Adamakl2+@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberNaples, Donnadnaples@pitt.edu
    Committee MemberZentner, Andrewzentner+@pitt.edu
    Title: Neutrinos in Cosmology and Particle Physics
    Status: Published
    Abstract: This thesis discusses two independent research topics. We first study keV sterile neutrinos as a Warm Dark Matter (WDM) candidate, focusing on their production at temperatures of the electroweak scale and the linear structure growth of WDM particles with arbitrary distribution functions and masses of keV scale. At temperatures of the electroweak scale, the medium effect modifies the mixing angle between sterile and active neutrinos, introducing two narrow Mikheev-Smirnov-Wolfenstein (MSW) resonances that break adiabaticity and enhance the non-thermal production of sterile neutrinos at small momenta. One of the two MSW resonances is in the absence of a lepton asymmetry and occurs only at temperatures around the electroweak scale. By solving the linearized collision-less Boltzmann equation, we obtain a semi-analytical expression of the matter power spectrum for WDM particles with arbitrary distributions agreeing within a few percent error with results from Boltzmann codes. This matter power spectrum depends on the horizon size at matter-radiation equality and the free streaming wave vector kfs, function of mass and distribution of WDM particles. We discover WDM acoustic oscillations at small scales about k>=2k_fs and an Integrated Sachs-Wolfe (ISW) effect in the Radiation Dominant (RD) era which enhances the matter power spectrum for k<=k_fs. A quasi-degeneracy between the mass and distribution function of WDM on the matter power spectrum is identified, suggesting an inherent ambiguity of Lyman-alpha analysis to constrain WDM parameters. Secondly, based on the observation that neutrinos produced from decay via the charge current interaction are entangled with the corresponding charged leptons, we re-investigate the theory of neutrino oscillations with the focus of the dynamics of the entangled state. We study the dynamics of entanglement and dis-entanglement explicitly in time, which leads to non-conventional expressions for neutrino oscillation amplitudes and probabilities suggesting possible corrections for short baseline neutrino oscillation experiments. By applying this method to the GSI anomaly, we unambiguously show that the GSI anomaly is not a consequence of neutrino oscillations.
    Date: 01 February 2012
    Date Type: Publication
    Defense Date: 12 October 2011
    Approval Date: 01 February 2012
    Submission Date: 17 November 2011
    Release Date: 01 February 2012
    Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
    Patent pending: No
    Number of Pages: 244
    Institution: University of Pittsburgh
    Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
    Refereed: Yes
    Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
    Uncontrolled Keywords: sterile neutrinos, Warm Dark Matter, neutrino oscillations, entanglement
    Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Physics
    Date Deposited: 01 Feb 2012 10:55
    Last Modified: 16 Jul 2014 17:02

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