Runaway Gravitational Production of Dark Photons

Kavli Affiliate: Edward W. Kolb

| First 5 Authors: Christian Capanelli, Leah Jenks, Edward W. Kolb, Evan McDonough,

| Summary:

We demonstrate that gravitational particle production (GPP) of a massive,
Abelian, vector (Proca) field during inflation in the presence of nonminimal
coupling to gravity may suffer from an instability which leads to runaway
production of high-momentum modes. This is untenable unless there is some
mechanism to regulate the runaway. We discuss the parameter space of the
particle mass and nonminimal couplings where such a runaway occurs and possible
ways to tame the runaway. We find that there is no obvious way to resolve the
runaway in a UV completion or with kinetic mixing to the standard model.

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