Sterile neutrino self-interactions: $H_0$ tension and short-baseline anomalies

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  • Maria Archidiacono, Universita degli Studi di Milano
  • ,
  • Stefano Gariazzo, Universitat de Valencia, INFN—Sezione di Torino
  • ,
  • Carlo Giunti, INFN—Sezione di Torino
  • ,
  • Steen Hannestad
  • Thomas Tram
Sterile neutrinos with a mass in the eV range have been invoked as a possible explanation of a variety of short baseline (SBL) neutrino oscillation anomalies. However, if one considers neutrino oscillations between active and sterile neutrinos, such neutrinos would have been fully thermalised in the early universe, and would be therefore in strong conflict with cosmological bounds. In this study we first update cosmological bounds on the mass and energy density of eV-scale sterile neutrinos. We then perform an updated study of a previously proposed model in which the sterile neutrino couples to a new light pseudoscalar degree of freedom. Consistently with previous analyses, we find that the model provides a good fit to all cosmological data and allows the high value of $H_0$ measured in the local universe to be consistent with measurements of the cosmic microwave background. However, new high $\ell$ polarisation data constrain the sterile neutrino mass to be less than approximately 1 eV in this scenario. Finally, we combine the cosmological bounds on the pseudoscalar model with a Bayesian inference analysis of SBL data and conclude that only a sterile mass in narrow ranges around 1 eV remains consistent with both cosmology and SBL data.
Original languageEnglish
Article number029
JournalJournal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020

    Research areas

  • Astrophysics - Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics, High Energy Physics - Phenomenology

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