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We propose an inflationary scenario, M-flation, in which inflation is driven by three $N\times N$ hermitian matrices $\Phi_i,\ i=1,2,3$. The inflationary potential is
constructed from $\Phi_{i}$ and their commutators which is strongly motivated from string theory. We show that one can consistently restrict the classical dynamics to a sector in which the $\Phi_i$ are proportional to the $N\times N$ irreducible representation of $SU(2)$. In this sector our model effectively behaves as an N-flation model with $3 N^2$ number of fields, and therefore removes
the fine-tunings associated with super-Planckian field and/or unnaturally small couplings in the chaotic type inflationary scenarios. Due to the matrix nature of the inflaton fields these extra $3N^2-1$ scalar fields also affect the inflationary dynamics. These have the observational effects such as production of entropy (non-adiabatic) perturbations on cosmic microwave background. Moreover, the existence of these other scalars provides us with a natural preheating mechanism and exit from inflation. As the effective inflaton can traverse super-Planckian distances in the field space, the model is capable of producing a considerable amount of gravity waves that can be probed by future CMB polarization
experiments such as PLANCK, QUIET and CMBPOL.
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