Block Course Cosmology SS2019


Lecturer: Annalisa Pillepich (MPIA)
Tutor: Branislav Avramov (ARI)
Term: Summer semester, 2019
Dates: September 11 - 20 2019
Times: Daily from 10:00 - 16:00 (morning lectures 10:00-13:00 + exercises 14:15-16:00)
Location: Philosophenweg 12, seminar room R106
Syllabus: >>here 

Details: The lecture is an introduction to cosmology with an emphasis on structure formation, for Master and PhD students. The lecture and exercise class will be held in English. 

The lecture covers the basic principles and properties of the standard cosmological model.  We will review the observational findings and theoretical arguments that support it and mention alternatives that are currently considered. We will make use of concepts from Newtonian gravity, General Relativity and some basic astronomy.  

  • The initial conditions of the Universe: elements of Inflation
  • The cosmic microwave background
  • The homogeneous Universe and its time evolution
  • The thermal and ionization history of the Universe
  • Cold dark matter and its "observational" evidences
  • Dark energy and its "observational" evidences
  • Beyond homogeneity: growth of perturbations
  • Beyond homogeneity: elements of cosmological perturbation theory at second order
  • Beyond homogeneity: power spectra, bispectra and other descriptors of the spatial distribution of matter
  • The hierarchical growth of structures: dark matter haloes and the large-scale structure
  • Fundamentals of galaxy formation
  • From observations of the cosmic microwave background to the values of the cosmological parameters
  • From observations of the large-scale structures to the values of the cosmological parameters

Exercises: Exercise classes will be held in the afternoon. They will be a mix of analytical and numerical problems. Students are invited to bring their laptop (or contact the lecturer if this is not possible) and to be ready to execute exercises, solve numerical equations, and make plots with Python, Matlab, IDL, or Mathematica.

Exam (required for credits): tentatively 2 hours written exam (about 1-2 weeks after the course) 

Important: To get credit points for the lectures it is necessary to enroll. To enroll and attend please send an email to 

Lehre, Studium und Forschung: Lehre, Studium und Forschung Module MVAstro4 (4CP): LSF

Other courses: "Simulations of galaxy formation and evolution", Graduate Days October 2018 "Master Seminar: Elements of Galaxy Formation Theory", WS19/20

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