Precision Detection of the Cosmic Neutrino Background

Robert E. Lopez, Scott Dodelson, Andrew Heckler, and Michael S. Turner
Phys. Rev. Lett. 82, 3952 – Published 17 May 1999
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In the standard big bang cosmology the canonical value for the ratio of relic neutrinos to cosmic microwave background (CMB) photons is 9/11. Within the framework of the standard model of particle physics there are small corrections, in sum about 1%, due to slight heating of neutrinos by electron-positron annihilations and finite-temperature QED effects. We show that this leads to changes in the predicted CMB anisotropies that will bias determination of the other cosmological parameters if not correctly taken into account. These changes might be detected by future satellite experiments.

  • Received 13 March 1998


©1999 American Physical Society

Authors & Affiliations

Robert E. Lopez1, Scott Dodelson2, Andrew Heckler3, and Michael S. Turner1,2,4

  • 1Department of Physics, The University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60637-1433
  • 2NASA/Fermilab Astrophysics Center, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Batavia, Illinois 60510-0500
  • 3Department of Physics, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio 43210
  • 4Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics, Enrico Fermi Institute, The University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60637-1433

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Vol. 82, Iss. 20 — 17 May 1999

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