In this course, we will develop in detail the standard hot big-bang model, discussing the Hubble expansion, the cosmic microwave background radiation, big-bang nucleosynthesis, the age of the Universe, the quantity and composition of matter in the Universe, and the origin of large-scale structure through the attractive action of gravity. We will present the powerful ideas based upon the deep connections between elementary particle physics and cosmology (e.g., inflation, cold dark matter, baryogenesis, cosmological phase transitions, and Einstein's cosmological constant) and discuss the myriad of observations and experiments that are testing them (Sloan Digital Sky Survey, precision measurements of the cosmic microwave background, Keck and HST studies of the origin and evolution of galaxies, ....).
Through lectures, discussion sessions and hands-on experiences with telescopes, cryogenic detectors, and computers the participants will learn about the hot big bang model and exciting forefront developments in cosmology. The instructors will be University of Chicago faculty and research scientists as well as scientists from the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, all of whom are actively involved in cosmological research. Field trips to Fermilab and the newly opened Pritzker Cosmology exhibit at the Adler Planetarium are planned.
For college teachers of: the physical sciences. Prerequisites: none