Syllabus

Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Course Description

This course covers the basics of general relativity, standard big bang cosmology, thermodynamics of the early universe, cosmic background radiation, primordial nucleosynthesis, basics of the standard model of particle physics, electroweak and QCD phase transition, basics of group theory, grand unified theories, baryon asymmetry, monopoles, cosmic strings, domain walls, axions, inflationary universe, and structure formation.

Topics were presented in the following order:

SES # TOPICS
Part 1: General Relativity
1.1 Transformations and Metric
1.2 Covariant Derivatives: Affine Structure
1.3 Covariant Derivatives: Metric
1.4 Invariant Measure
1.5 Curvature
1.6 Invariant Actions
1.7 Field Equations
1.8 Newtonian Limit
Part 2: Cosmological Models with Idealized Matter
2.1 Model Spaces: Construction
2.2 Friedmann-Robertson-Walker (FRW) Spacetimes
2.3 Curvature Calculations
2.4 FRW Dynamics
2.5 Canonical Model Cosmologies
2.6 Global Structure and Causality Relations
2.7 Measures of Space-Time Geometry
2.8 Olbers' Paradox
Part 3: Cosmological Models with Known Matter
3.1 Effect of Expansion on Matter
3.2 Effect of Expansion on Free Thermal Distributions

 

Prerequisites

Relativistic Quantum Field Theory I (8.323), and Relativistic Quantum Field Theory II (8.324)

Textbook

Amazon logo Peacock, John A. Cosmological Physics. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1998. ISBN: 9780521422703.

Grading Policy

Class Participation - 100%