Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics
University of Chicago
WF 1:30-3:00 AAC 123
First Meeting: 1/5
This course will have its focus on the inhomogeneous universe.
I expect that you are comfortable with programming in your language of choice. Some rudimentary general relativity background would be helpful but not
There is no required texbook for the course but here are a few suggestions:
- Peacock: Cosmological Physics, Cambridge 1999 (a broad book)
- Dodelson: Modern Cosmology (CMB, kinetic theory)
- Kolb & Turner: Early Universe (early universe)
- Liddle & Lyth: Cosmological Inflation and Large-Scale Structure (inflationary perturbation theory),
- Padmanabhan: Structure Formation in the Universe (non-linear collapse)
In the syllabus below, I give a cross reference to Peacock's book for further reading.
There will be
weekly problem sets (50%)
and a final project (50%).
For a final project you may work in groups of 5 (or fewer) people
on any of the following
- Particle Mesh N-Body Code
- Inflationary Perturbation Solver
- Einstein-Boltzmann Code
- Halo Model Code
- Monte Carlo Markov Chain
You may also come up with your own comparable numerical project or be creative and develop a webApp or iApp. If you are truly
computation averse see me for permission to do a reading project.
You will present your project to the class at the end of the quarter and submit
the PDF of the presentation for linkage here. Extra credit if you make your code
Final Project Preparation
Each project has a core set of things that I expect you to accomplish.
I encourage you to develop your codes further in ways of your choosing
to develop a more extensive toolbox.
Follow Andrey Kravtsov's Notes
Halo Model Group
Read Cooray & Sheth [Phys.Rept. 372 (2002) 1-129
e-Print: astro-ph/0206508] and construct the halo model nonlinear
matter power spectrum out the 1 halo + 2 halo terms, halo bias, and
the NFW profile.
You may find these excersises helpful
Problem Set 1
Problem Set 2
Problem Set 3
Problem Set 4
but you do not need to turn these in.
Code up a MCMC analysis of your favorite cosmological data set
(e.g. UNION2 SN) and extract the posterior probability distributions
of the cosmological parameters you include. Compare them with known results
in the literature. You may find COSMOMC and Lewis and Bridle
Phys.Rev. D66 (2002) 103511 e-Print: astro-ph/0205436 useful.
Final Project Presentations
Rough outline of the course:
- Friedmann Robertson Walker (FRW) Cosmology: P-Ch-3 & 5
- Matter in the Universe: P-Ch-12
- Kinetic theory in an expanding universe: P-Ch-15.1-15.6; P-Ch-16.1-16.3; Kolb & Turner; Dodelson
- Inhomogeneous fields and linear perturbation theory: P-Ch-15.1-15.6; P-Ch-16.1-16.3; Dodelson
- Inflationary Cosmology: P-Ch-11; Liddle & Lyth
- Cosmic Microwave Background: P-Ch-18; online tutorial
- Large Scale Structure: P-Ch-15
- Spherical collapse and mass functions: P-Ch-15.7-8; 16.4; 17.2
- Bias and the halo model: P-Ch-15.7-8: P-Ch-15.7-8; 16.4; 17.2
Lecture notes will be posted as we go through the course: