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Phys Rev Lett. 2012 Jan 20;108(3):031301. Epub 2012 Jan 18.

Self-consistent evolution of magnetic fields and chiral asymmetry in the early universe.

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1
Instituut-Lorentz for Theoretical Physics, Universiteit Leiden, Niels Bohrweg 2, Leiden, The Netherlands.

Abstract

We show that the evolution of magnetic fields in a primordial plasma, filled with standard model particles at temperatures T≳10 MeV, is strongly affected by the chiral anomaly-an effect previously neglected. Although reactions, equilibrating left and right electrons, are in thermal equilibrium for T≲80 TeV, a left-right asymmetry develops in the presence of strong magnetic fields. This results in magnetic helicity transfer from shorter to longer scales and lepton asymmetry present in the plasma until T~10 MeV, which may strongly affect many processes in the early Universe.

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