Strong first-order phase transitions: Vorticity, droplets and gravitational waves

November 12, 2019
3:00pm to 4:00pm

IFT Seminar Room/Red Room

Specialist level
Daniel Cutting
Sussex U.

IFT Seminar Room/Red Room


Although in the Standard Model the electroweak phase transition is a crossover, many well-motivated extensions can generate a first-order phase transition at the electroweak scale. For a sufficiently strong phase transition, LISA would be able to observe gravitational waves sourced by plasma motion generated by expanding and colliding bubbles. While numerical simulations have examined ‘weak’ and ‘intermediate’ strength phase transitions, we conduct the first 3-dimensional simulations of strong first-order thermal phase transitions in the early Universe. We examine two types of transition, deflagrations and detonations. Detonations in strong transitions behave similarly to their weak and intermediate counterparts. In deflagrations, substantial vorticity is generated, hot droplets form, and the gravitational wave signal is reduced compared to previous models.