Adam Christopherson (University of Florida, United States)
Dark matter is a crucial ingredient of the standard cosmological model, making up over 80% of the total matter in the Universe. Although observational evidence strongly favors the existence of dark matter, we are yet to physically detect a particle, despite many attempts to do so. In order to model the dynamics of structure formation with dark matter one uses Newtonian physics, where we are able to understand much in the linear regime. While this is reliable for WIMPs, it is not necessarily the case for other candidates. In particular, for the axion, one might expect that this description as a classical, pressureless fluid is incomplete, since the axion is really a quantum field. In this talk I will describe work done on the first step towards the goal of describing structure formation with axions. Namely, I will show that the wavefunction approach reproduces the usual evolution equation for the density perturbation, albeit with an additional term dubbed the 'quantum pressure' term. I will close with a discussion of limitations of the approach, and plans for future work.