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The Quantum Field Theory of K-mouflage

Abstract : We consider K-mouflage models which are K-essence theories coupled to matter. We analyse their quantum properties and in particular the quantum corrections to the classical Lagrangian. We setup the renormalisation programme for these models and show that K-mouflage theories involve a recursive construction whereby each set of counter-terms introduces new divergent quantum contributions which in turn must be subtracted by new counter-terms. This tower of counter-terms can be constructed by recursion and allows one to calculate the finite renormalised action of the model. In particular, the classical action is not renormalised and the finite corrections to the renormalised action contain only higher derivative operators. We establish an operational criterion for classicality, where the corrections to the classical action are negligible, and show that this is satisfied in cosmological and astrophysical situations for (healthy) K-mouflage models which pass the solar system tests. We also find that these models are quantum stable around astrophysical and cosmological backgrounds. We then consider the possible embedding of the K-mouflage models in an Ultra-Violet completion. We find that the healthy models which pass the solar system tests all violate the positivity constraint which would follow from the unitarity of the putative UV completion, implying that these healthy K-mouflage theories have no UV completion. We then analyse their behaviour at high energy and we find that the classicality criterion is satisfied in the vicinity of a high energy collision implying that the classical K-mouflage theory can be applied in this context. Moreover, the classical description becomes more accurate as the energy increases, in a way compatible with the classicalisation concept.
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Philippe Brax, Patrick Valageas. The Quantum Field Theory of K-mouflage. Physical Review D, American Physical Society, 2016, 94, pp.043529. ⟨10.1103/PhysRevD.94.043529⟩. ⟨cea-01461555⟩

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