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The existence of a quantum bounce in isotropic spacetimes is a key result in loop quantum cosmology (LQC), which has been demonstrated to arise in all the models studied so far. In most of the models, the bounce has been studied using numerical simulations involving states which are sharply peaked and which bounce at volumes much larger than the Planck volume. An important issue is to confirm the existence of the bounce for states which have a wide spread, or which bounce closer to the Planck volume. Numerical simulations with such states demand large computational domains, making them very expensive and practically infeasible with the techniques which have been implemented so far. To overcome these difficulties, we present an efficient hybrid numerical scheme using the property that at the small spacetime curvature, the quantum Hamiltonian constraint in LQC, which is a difference equation with uniform discretization in volume, can be approximated by a Wheeler-DeWitt differential equation. By carefully choosing a hybrid spatial grid allowing the use of partial differential equations at large volumes, and with a simple change of geometrical coordinate, we obtain a surprising reduction in the computational cost. This scheme enables us to explore regimes which were so far unachievable for the isotropic model in LQC. Our approach also promises to significantly reduce the computational cost for numerical simulations in anisotropic LQC using high performance computing. © 2014 IOP Publishing Ltd.

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Classical and Quantum Gravity