Quantum corrections to slow-roll inflation: scalar and tensor modes
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Inflation is often described through the dynamics of a scalar field, slow-rolling in a suitable potential. Ultimately, this inflaton must be identified with the expectation value of a quantum field, evolving in a quantum effective potential. The shape of this potential is determined by the underlying tree-level potential, dressed by quantum corrections from the scalar field itself and the metric perturbations. Following , we compute the effective scalar field equations and the corrected Friedmann equations to quadratic order in both scalar field, scalar metric and tensor perturbations. We identify the quantum corrections from different sources at leading order in slow-roll, and estimate their magnitude in benchmark models of inflation. We comment on the implications of non-minimal coupling to gravity in this context.