Image credits --
left: from NASA's "WMAP Introduction to Cosmology"
website; center: cluster resimulation from the Multidark
database (Kristin Riebe); right: lensing cluster imaged
by the Hubble Space Telescope (Hubble Heritage).
lectures: Tuesday and Friday, 10:20-11:40
location: ARC 108
textbook: "Modern Cosmology" by Scott Dodelson ISBN
from Rutgers bookstore or Amazon)
I will maintain a Sakai site where I will post
announcements, handouts, and assignments.
Physical Cosmology is the study of the
evolution of the Universe from shortly after the Big Bang until the
present. It is an exciting topic because we now have both a
well-developed theory (the Lambda Cold Dark Matter model) and an
ever-growing wealth of observations with which to confront it.
Classical cosmology courses cover the smooth, expanding Universe,
with linear perturbations generated by inflation, the Cosmic
Microwave Background radiation, and the production of the light
elements. We will cover these topics as well, but will also learn
about aspects of cosmology that are active topics of current
research: the observational evidence for the existence of dark
matter and dark energy, the formation and properties of dark matter
halos, and the formation and evolution of non-linear structures such
as galaxies and clusters of galaxies.
The grade in this course will be based on
performance in the following areas: class participation, homework
assignments, a written term paper, and an oral presentation on the
term paper at the end of the semester (percentages TBD).
Students with Disabilities:
There are many textbooks on cosmology. Here are some that I like, in
no particular order:
Mo, van den Bosch & White: Galaxy Formation and Evolution
Peacock: Cosmological Physics
Padmanabhan: Structure Formation in the Universe
Kolb & Turner: The Early Universe
Liddle & Lyth: Cosmological Inflation and Large Scale Structure
Coles & Lucchin: Cosmology: The Origin and Evolution of Cosmic
Structure (2nd edition)
Weinberg: Gravitation and Cosmology
Peebles: Principles of Physical Cosmology
Peebles: The Large Scale Structure of the Universe
Durrer: The Cosmic Microwave Background
Ryden: Introduction to Cosmology
Longair: Galaxy Formation
Schneider: Extragalactic Astronomy & Cosmology