Cosmology - the science of the Universe at large - has experienced a renaissance in the decades bracketing the turn of the twenty-first century. Exploring our emerging understanding of cosmology, this text takes two complementary points of view: the physical principles underlying theories of cosmology, and the observable consequences of models of Universal expansion. The book develops cosmological models based on fundamental physical principles, with mathematics limited to the minimum necessary to keep the material accessible for students of physics and astronomy at the advanced undergraduate level. A substantial review of general relativity leading up to the Einstein field equations is included, with derivations of explicit formulations connecting observable features of the Universe to models of its expansion. Self-contained and up to date in respect of modern observations, the text provides a solid theoretical grounding in modern cosmology while preparing readers for the changes that will inevitably come from future observations.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Number of pages: 290
Weight: 740 g
Dimensions: 253 x 180 x 18 mm
'Firstly, 'the book emphasises physical concepts over mathematical results wherever possible', yet gives a substantial introduction to the necessary mathematics of general relativity. Thus the physics is not obscured by mathematical technicalities but the required mathematics is not glossed over either. Secondly, it acknowledges that modern cosmology 'is likely to experience considerable revision as new observations and physics come to bear upon it', so the book 'derives and interprets its results in a manner conducive to re-interpretation when new observations and/or physics so permit'. This is a refreshing change from the dogmatism that tends to pervade cosmology ... In particular, its presentation of general relativity is readable and persuasive. ... an excellent first book to bring the reader close to the forefront of current understanding of cosmology.' Robert Sinclair MacKay, Contemporary Physics