Abstract:
We consider power-law inflation with a Gauss-Bonnet correction inspired by string theory. We analyze the stability of cosmological perturbations and obtain the allowed parameter space. We find that for GB-dominated inflation ultra-violet instabilities of either scalar or tensor perturbations show up on small scales. The Gauss-Bonnet correction with a positive (or negative) coupling may lead to a reduction (or enhancement) of the tensor-to-scalar ratio in the potential-dominated case. We place tight constraints on the model parameters by making use of the WMAP 5-year data.

Abstract:
We consider slow-roll inflation for a single scalar field with an arbitrary potential and an arbitrary nonminimal coupling to the Gauss-Bonnet term. By introducing a combined hierarchy of Hubble and Gauss-Bonnet flow functions, we analytically derive the power spectra of scalar and tensor perturbations. The standard consistency relation between the tensor-to-scalar ratio and the spectral index of tensor perturbations is broken. We apply this formalism to a specific model with a monomial potential and an inverse monomial Gauss-Bonnet coupling and constrain it by the 7-year Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe data. The Gauss-Bonnet term with a positive (or negative) coupling may lead to a reduction (or enhancement) of the tensor-to-scalar ratio and hence may revive the quartic potential ruled out by recent cosmological data.

Abstract:
We investigate the cosmological evolution of the system of a Dirac-Born-Infeld field plus a perfect fluid. We analyze the existence and stability of scaling solutions for the AdS throat and the quadratic potential. We find that the scaling solutions exist when the equation of state of the perfect fluid is negative and in the ultra-relativistic limit.

Abstract:
We study asymptotically AdS topological black hole solutions with k=0 (plane symmetric) in the Einstein gravity with Gauss-Bonnet term, the dilaton and a "cosmological constant" in various dimensions. We derive the field equations for suitable ansatz for general D dimensions. We determine the parameter regions including dilaton couplings where such solutions exist and construct black hole solutions of various masses numerically in D=4,5,6 and 10 dimensional spacetime with (D-2)-dimensional hypersurface of zero curvature.

Abstract:
A united approach of the large-scale structure of a closed universe and the local spherically symmetric gravitational field is given by supposing an appropriate boundary condition. The general feature of the model obtained are the following. The universe is approximately homogeneous and isotropic on the average on large scale and is expanding at present, as described by the standard model; while locally, the small exterior region of a star started long ago to contract, as expected by the gravitational collapse theory.

Abstract:
We discuss the realization of inflation and resulting cosmological perturbations in the low-energy effective string theory. In order to obtain nearly scale-invariant spectra of density perturbations and a suppressed tensor-to-scalar ratio, it is generally necessary that the dilaton field $\phi$ is effectively decoupled from gravity together with the existence of a slowly varying dilaton potential. We also study the effect of second-order corrections to the tree-level action which are the sum of a Gauss-Bonnet term coupled to $\phi$ and a kinetic term $(\nabla \phi)^4$. We find that it is possible to realize observationally supported spectra of scalar and tensor perturbations provided that the correction is dominated by the $(\nabla \phi)^4$ term even in the absence of the dilaton potential. When the Gauss-Bonnet term is dominant, tensor perturbations exhibit violent negative instabilities on small-scales about a de Sitter background in spite of the fact that scale-invariant scalar perturbations can be achieved.

Abstract:
We study cosmological solutions in the low-energy effective heterotic string theory, which is the Einstein gravity with Gauss-Bonnet term and the dilaton. We show that the field equations are cast into an autonomous system for flat internal and external spaces, and derive all the fixed points in the system. We also examine the time evolution of the solutions and whether the solutions can give (transient) accelerated expansion of our four-dimensional space in the Einstein frame.

Abstract:
We place observational constraints on a coupling between dark energy and dark matter by using 71 Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) from the first year of the five-year Supernova Legacy Survey (SNLS), the cosmic microwave background (CMB) shift parameter from the three-year Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), and the baryon acoustic oscillation (BAO) peak found in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The interactions we study are (i) constant coupling delta and (ii) varying coupling delta(z) that depends on a redshift z, both of which have simple parametrizations of the Hubble parameter to confront with observational data. We find that the combination of the three databases marginalized over a present dark energy density gives stringent constraints on the coupling, -0.08 < delta < 0.03 (95% CL) in the constant coupling model and -0.4 < delta_0 < 0.1 (95% CL) in the varying coupling model, where delta_0 is a present value. The uncoupled LambdaCDM model (w_X = -1 and delta = 0) still remains a good fit to the data, but the negative coupling (delta < 0) with the equation of state of dark energy w_X < -1 is slightly favoured over the LambdaCDM model.

Abstract:
We study asymptotically AdS topological black hole solutions with k=0 (plane symmetric) in the Einstein gravity with Gauss-Bonnet term, the dilaton and a "cosmological constant" in various dimensions. We derive the field equations for suitable ansatz for general D dimensions. We determine the parameter regions including dilaton couplings where such solutions exist and construct black hole solutions of various masses numerically in D=4,5,6 and 10 dimensional spacetime with (D-2)-dimensional hypersurface of zero curvature.

Abstract:
We use the localized principle component analysis to detect deviations from scale invariance of the primordial power spectrum of curvature perturbations. With the technique we make uncorrelated estimates of the primordial power spectrum with five wavenumber bins. In the framework of a minimal LCDM model, using the latest cosmic microwave background data from the WMAP and ACT experiments we find that more than 95% of the preferred models are incompatible with the assumption of scale-invariance, but still compatible with a power-law primordial spectrum. We also forecast the sensitivity and constraints achievable by the Planck experiment by performing Monte Carlo studies on simulated data. Planck could significantly improve the constraints on the primordial power spectrum, especially at small scales by roughly a factor of 4.