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On virialization with dark energy – Irit Maor

Date: Tue. October 11th, 2005, 11:30 am-12:30 pm
Location: Rockefeller 221

We review the inclusion of dark energy into the formalism of spherical collapse, and the virialization of a two-component system, made of matter and dark energy. We compare two approaches in the literature. The first assumes that only the matter component virializes, e.g. as in the case of a classic cosmological constant. The second approach allows the full system to virialize as a whole. We show that the two approaches give fundamentally different results for the final state of the system. This might be a differentiating signature between the classic cosmological constant which cannot virialize, and a dynamical dark energy mimicking a cosmological constant. This signature is independent of the measured value of the equation of state. An additional issue which we address is energy non-conservation of the system, which originates from the homogeneity assumption about the dark energy. We propose how to take this energy loss into account.

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