Abstract

We examine the simplest inflection point quintessence model, with a potential given by V(ϕ)=V0+V3ϕ3. This model can produce either asymptotic de Sitter expansion or transient acceleration, and we show that it does not correspond to either pure freezing or thawing behavior. We derive observational constraints on the initial value of the scalar field, ϕi, and V3/V0 and find that small values of either ϕi or V3/V0 are favored. While most of the observationally-allowed parameter space yields asymptotic de Sitter evolution, there is a small region, corresponding to large V3/V0 and small ϕi, for which the current accelerated expansion is transient. The latter behavior is potentially consistent with a cyclic universe.

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