Regular Article - Theoretical Physics
Running coupling: does the coupling between dark energy and dark matter change sign during the cosmological evolution?
Department of Physics, College of Sciences, Northeastern University, Shenyang, 110819, China
2 Center for High Energy Physics, Peking University, Beijing, 100080, China
* e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Revised: 13 June 2011
Published online: 20 July 2011
In this paper we put forward a running coupling scenario for describing the interaction between dark energy and dark matter. The dark sector interaction in our scenario is free of the assumption that the interaction term Q is proportional to the Hubble expansion rate and the energy densities of dark sectors. We only use a time-variable coupling b(a) (with a the scale factor of the universe) to characterize the interaction Q. We propose a parametrization form for the running coupling b(a)=b 0 a+b e (1−a) in which the early-time coupling is given by a constant b e , while today the coupling is given by another constant, b 0. For investigating the feature of the running coupling, we employ three dark energy models, namely, the cosmological constant model (w=−1), the constant w model (w=w 0), and the time-dependent w model (w(a)=w 0+w 1(1−a)). We constrain the models with the current observational data, including the type Ia supernova, the baryon acoustic oscillation, the cosmic microwave background, the Hubble expansion rate, and the X-ray gas mass fraction data. The fitting results indicate that a time-varying vacuum scenario is favored, in which the coupling b(z) crosses the noninteracting line (b=0) during the cosmological evolution and the sign changes from negative to positive. The crossing of the noninteracting line happens at around z=0.2–0.3, and the crossing behavior is favored at about 1σ confidence level. Our work implies that we should pay more attention to the time-varying vacuum model and seriously consider the phenomenological construction of a sign-changeable or oscillatory interaction between dark sectors.
© Springer-Verlag / Società Italiana di Fisica, 2011