Quantum tunnelling from vacuum in multidimensions
Published 2017-10-12Version 1
The tunnelling of virtual matter-antimatter pairs from the quantum vacuum in multidimensions is studied. We consider electric backgrounds as a linear combination of a spatial Sauter field and, interchangeably, certain weaker time dependent fields without poles in the complex plane such as the sinusoidal and Gaussian cases. Based on recent geometric considerations within the worldline formalism, we employ the relevant critical points in order to analytically estimate a characteristic threshold for the temporal inhomogeneity. We set appropriate initial conditions and apply additional symmetry constraints in order to determine the classical periodic paths in spacetime. Using these worldline instantons, we compute the corresponding leading order exponential factors showing large dynamical enhancement in general. We work out the main differences caused by the analytic structure of such composite backgrounds and also discuss the case with a strong temporal variation of Sauter-type.