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Cosmology: CONTENTS


cover image
These very distant, faint galaxies are part of the Hubble Ultra Deep Field. (NASA/ESA/S Beckwith [STScI] and the HUDF team)




1: Introduction

An illustration of the history of the universe


2: First steps

The first steps on the distance ladder  


3: How bright, how far?

The inverse-square law, parallax and the Doppler Shift


4: A universe of galaxies

Cepheid variable stars and dark matter  


5: The expanding universe

Hubble’s Law and the expansion of the universe  


6: The flat universe?

Einstein’s General Relativity and the Friedmann cosmological models


7: Building planets

Nuclear fusion, formation of the elements and planetary systems


8: Quasars

Controversy about the distance of quasars, and black holes


9: The Hubble constant

The controversy over H0, and the Hubble Key Program


10: Why is the sky dark at night?

Background radiation from galaxies and Olbers' Paradox


11: The hot Big Bang

Blackbody radiation, particles and atoms, and the formation of galaxies


12: The cosmic microwave background

Cosmic microwave background fluctuations  


13: What was before the Big Bang?

The puzzle of isotropy, and the multiverse. Plus further reading and useful websites




●  This eBook was compiled for the Royal Astronomical Society by the RAS Education Committee. © 2011. The RAS thanks its former President, Prof. Michael Rowan-Robinson, for supplying the original text.

●  The RAS is not responsible for the accuracy of the content of external material.

●  Designed by Paul Johnson at Formula Media LLP