Skip to content

Low energy ghosts and the Jeans’ instability

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

We show that a massless canonical scalar field minimally coupled to general relativity can become a tachyonic ghost at low energies around a background in which the scalar's gradient is spacelike. By performing a canonical transformation we demonstrate that this low energy ghost can be recast, at the level of the action, in a form of a fluid that undergoes a Jeans-like instability affecting only modes with large wavelength. This illustrates that low-energy tachyonic ghosts do not lead to a catastrophic quantum vacuum instability, unlike the usual high-energy ghost degrees of freedom.
Original languageEnglish
Article number064001
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number6
Early online date1 Sep 2016
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sep 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Low energy ghosts and the Jeans’ instability

    Rights statement: A. Emir Gümrükçüoğlu, Shinji Mukohyama, and Thomas P. Sotiriou. 'Low energy ghosts and the Jeans’ instability'. Phys. Rev. D 94, 064001. © 2016 American Physical Society.

    Final published version, 118 KB, PDF document

Related information

Relations Get citation (various referencing formats)

ID: 10959140