We show that self-ordering scalar fields (SOSF), i.e. non-topological cosmic defects arising after a global phase transition, cannot explain the B-mode signal recently announced by BICEP2. We compute the full CBℓ angular power spectrum of B-modes due to the vector and tensor perturbations of SOSF, modeled in the large-N limit of a spontaneous broken global O(N) symmetry. We conclude that the low-ℓ multipoles detected by BICEP2 cannot be due mainly to SOSF, since they have the wrong spectrum at low multipoles. As a byproduct we derive the first cosmological constraints on this model, showing that the BICEP2 B-mode polarization data admits at most a 2-3% contribution from SOSF in the temperature anisotropies, similar to (but somewhat tighter than) the recently studied case of cosmic strings.

## Address

Département de Physique Théorique

Université de Genève

24, quai Ernest Ansermet

1211 Genève 4

Switzerland

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