Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session
8.942 is the graduate astrophysics version of cosmology and is complementary to 8.952 (Particle Physics of the Early Universe), which emphasizes early universe physics. This course treats modern observational cosmology in some detail, including the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation, galaxies and related phenomena at high redshift, and cosmic structure formation.
There are no prerequisites for this course, but permission of the instructor is required.
2/3 of the grade will be based on 10 problem sets.
1/3 of the grade will be based on a term paper (approximately 8 pages double-spaced) on a cosmology topic of your choice, due on the last day of class.
There will be no final exam or other assignments.
You may work on the problem sets with other students but must write up the solutions yourself. The problem sets are intended to help you learn the material more than for me to grade you. The problem sets require some background in general relativity and an ability to solve differential equations numerically using MATLAB®, Maple®, or Mathematica® or other software of your choosing.