According to the famous Lyth bound, one can confirm large field inflation by finding tensor modes with sufficiently large tensor-to-scalar ratio $r$. Here we will try to answer two related questions: Is it possible to rule out all large field inflationary models by not finding tensor modes with $r$ above some critical value, and what can we say about the scale of inflation by measuring $r$? However, in order to answer these questions one should distinguish between two different definitions of the large field inflation and three different definitions of the scale of inflation. We will examine these issues using the theory of cosmological $\alpha$-attractors as a convenient testing ground.
Fri, 2 Dec 16
Comments: 6 pages, 1 figure