Friday, July 19, 2013

1307.4751 (Lorenzo Iorio)

Constraints of the gravitational Local Position Invariance from Solar
System planetary precessions

Lorenzo Iorio
In the framework of the Parameterized Post-Newtonian (PPN) formalism, we calculate the long-term Preferred Location (PL) effects, proportional to the Whitehead parameter \xi, affecting all the Keplerian orbital elements of a localized two-body system, apart from the semimajor axis a. They violate the gravitational Local Position Invariance (LPI), fulfilled by General Relativity (GR). We constrain \xi by using the latest results in the field of the Solar System planetary ephemerides. The non-detection of any anomalous perihelion precession for Mars allows us to indirectly infer |\xi| <= 5.8 x 10^-6. The ratio of the anomalous perihelion precessions for Venus and Jupiter, preliminarily determined with the EPM2011 ephemerides at the < 3\sigma level, if confirmed as genuine physical effects needing explanation by future studies, rules out the hypothesis \xi not equal to 0. A critical discussion of the |\xi| <= 10^-6-10^-7 upper bounds obtained in the literature from the close alignment of the Sun's spin axis and the total angular momentum of the Solar System is presented.
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