Syllabus for Gravitation and Cosmology

Gravitation och kosmologi

Syllabus

  • 10 credits
  • Course code: 1FA157
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Physics A1F

    Explanation of codes

    The code indicates the education cycle and in-depth level of the course in relation to other courses within the same main field of study according to the requirements for general degrees:

    First cycle
    G1N: has only upper-secondary level entry requirements
    G1F: has less than 60 credits in first-cycle course/s as entry requirements
    G1E: contains specially designed degree project for Higher Education Diploma
    G2F: has at least 60 credits in first-cycle course/s as entry requirements
    G2E: has at least 60 credits in first-cycle course/s as entry requirements, contains degree project for Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science
    GXX: in-depth level of the course cannot be classified.

    Second cycle
    A1N: has only first-cycle course/s as entry requirements
    A1F: has second-cycle course/s as entry requirements
    A1E: contains degree project for Master of Arts/Master of Science (60 credits)
    A2E: contains degree project for Master of Arts/Master of Science (120 credits)
    AXX: in-depth level of the course cannot be classified.

  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (3), Pass with credit (4), Pass with distinction (5)
  • Established: 2010-03-18
  • Established by:
  • Revised: 2018-08-30
  • Revised by: The Faculty Board of Science and Technology
  • Applies from: week 30, 2019
  • Entry requirements: 120 credits with Quantum Physics, Statistical Mechanics, Analytical Mechanics and Special Relativity.
  • Responsible department: Department of Physics and Astronomy

Learning outcomes

On completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • explain and describe the equivalence principle,
  • explain the concept of a metric and solve geodesic equations,
  • analyse and solve Einstein's equations for many situations,
  • explain what a black hole is and describe its properties,
  • describe the concepts within the standard cosmological model, such as the expanding universe, the cosmic microwave background radiation, dark matter as well as inflation.

Content

The course is an introduction to general relativity with applications to cosmology. Connections with modern research are emphasised throughout the course in order to bring the student up to date with the scientific frontline.
The first part of the course introduces general relativity; its mathematical basis in the form of Einstein's equations and the mathematics of curved space-time, metrics, curvature tensors and geodesics; the equivalence principle; classical tests of the theory such as the bending of light and the precession of the perihelion of Mercury; gravitational waves. The mathematical description of black holes in the form of the Schwarzchild metric with an analysis of its horizon and singularity. Kerr and Reissner-Nordström black holes.
The course's second part treats applications within cosmology. The mathematical description of the Robertson-Walker metric, the Big Bang, the expanding universe with a cosmological constant, dark matter, the cosmic microwave background radiation and inflation will be analysed and discussed.

Instruction

Lectures and lessons.

Assessment

Written examination at the end of the course combined with  hand-in problems during the course. 
 
If there are special reasons for doing so, an examiner may make an exception from the method of assessment indicated and allow a student to be assessed by another method. An example of special reasons might be a certificate regarding special pedagogical support from the disability coordinator of the university.

Reading list

Reading list

Applies from: week 30, 2019

  • Carroll, Sean M. Spacetime and geometry : an introduction to general relativity

    New international edition: Harlow: Pearson, 2014

    Find in the library

    Mandatory

  • Cheng, Ta-Pei Relativity, Gravitation and Cosmology

    Oxford University Press,

    Optional reading

    Find in the library

  • Schutz, B. A First Course in General Relativity

    second edition: Cambridge University Press,

    Optional reading

    Find in the library

    Mandatory