Gauging the cosmic microwave background

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Zibin, J. P.
Scott, Douglas
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We provide a new derivation of the anisotropies of the cosmic microwave background (CMB), and find an exact expression that can be readily expanded perturbatively. Close attention is paid to gauge issues, with the motivation to examine the effect of super-Hubble modes on the CMB. We calculate a transfer function that encodes the behaviour of the dipole, and examine its long-wavelength behaviour. We show that contributions to the dipole from adiabatic super-Hubble modes are strongly suppressed, even in the presence of a cosmological constant, contrary to claims in the literature. We also introduce a naturally defined CMB monopole, which exhibits closely analogous long-wavelength behaviour. We discuss the geometrical origin of this super-Hubble suppression, pointing out that it is a simple reflection of adiabaticity, and hence argue that it will occur regardless of the matter content.
Comment: 17 pages, 5 figures; minor changes; version accepted to Phys. Rev. D
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Astrophysics
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