Cosmology & Gravitation

This series consists of talks in the areas of Cosmology, Gravitation and Particle Physics.

Seminar Series Events/Videos

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TBA
Oct 21 2014 - 11:00am
Room #: 400
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Oct 21 2014 - 2:00pm
Room #: 394
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Oct 22 2014 - 11:00am
Room #: 400
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Nov 4 2014 - 11:00am
Room #: 400
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Nov 18 2014 - 11:00am
Room #: 400
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Jan 13 2015 - 11:00am
Room #: 400
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Tuesday Sep 30, 2014
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By now, both black hole astrophysics and big bang cosmology are empirically well-established disciplines of physics and astronomy. They are also the only circumstances in nature where Einstein's general relativity can be seen in its full glory, and yet contain within them, its eventual and inevitable folly. Here, I will outline subtle lines evidence for why a phenomenologically successful description of big bang cosmology and black hole horizons may be intimately connected.

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Thursday Sep 18, 2014
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I will discuss the evolution of a quantum scalar field in a toy universe which has three stages of evolution, viz., (i) an early (inflationary) de Sitter phase (ii) radiation-dominated phase and (iii) late-time (cosmological constant dominated) de Sitter phase. Using the Schr\"odinger picture, the scalar field equations are solved separately for the three stages and matched at the transition points. The boundary conditions are chosen so that field modes in the early de Sitter phase evolve from the Bunch-Davies vacuum state.

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Tuesday Sep 16, 2014
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Peculiar velocities - deviations from Hubble expansion - are the only practical probe of the growth of matter density fluctuations on very large scales in the nearby Universe. I will discuss recent measurements of quantities of cosmological interest from our group and others. One is the "bulk" flow of nearby galaxies with respect to the frame defined by the Cosmic Microwave Background, and what this tells us about fluctuations on large very spatial scales.

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Tuesday Sep 02, 2014
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There need not be any conflict between unitarity, locality, and regularity of the horizon in black hole evaporation. I discuss a scenario in which the initial collapse that forms the black hole results in a small non-singular core inside an inner event horizon. This core grows as the result of quantum back-reaction associated with the increasing entanglement entropy of Hawking radiation quanta and their partners trapped inside the core.

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Thursday Aug 07, 2014
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The talk is based on joint work with Yuri Manin (arXiv:1402.2158). Using algebro-geometric blowups it is possible to construct a family of models of gluing of aeons across a Big-Bang type singularity, which includes the case of Penrose's conformally cyclic cosmology, as well as inflationary multiverse models generalizing the "eternal symmetree", and BKLL mixmaster type cosmologies. Using the mixmaster dynamics, formulated in terms of elliptic curves and modular curves, we speculate on the geometry of cosmological time near the gluing of aeons.

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Tuesday Aug 05, 2014
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Accreting supermassive black holes in the centres of galaxies (i.e. Active Galactic Nuclei - AGN) are now known to play a prominent role in the growth of galaxies through cosmic time. The fundamental parameters to explain the whole range of observed properties of these accreting systems, however, is still elusive. We will present some results from multi-wavelength investigations of the nature of accreting supermassive black holes, including those that produce low kinetic power jets as well as high kinetic power, relativistic jets.

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Tuesday Jul 15, 2014
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I will try to explain how cosmological coincidence of the two values, the matter energy density and the dark energy density, at the present epoch based on a single scalar field model whith a quartic potential, non-mimimally interacting with gravity. Dark energy in this model originates from the potential energy of the scalar field, which is sourced by the appearance of non-relativistic matter at the time z~ 10^10. No fine tuning of parameter are neccessary.

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Thursday Jun 26, 2014
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The singularity theorems of general relativity tell us that spacetime singularities form in gravitational collapse, but tell us very little about the precise nature of these singularities. More information can be found using analytic approximations and numerical simulations. It is conjectured that inside black holes are two types of singularities: one that is spacelike, local, and oscillatory, and the other that is null and weak.

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Thursday Jun 12, 2014
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A variable speed of light (VSL) cosmology is developed with a spontaneous breaking of Lorentz invariance in the early universe. A non-minimal electromagnetic coupling to curvature and the resulting quantum electrodynamic vacuum polarization dispersive medium can produce c >> c0 in the early universe, where c0 is the measured speed of light today.

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Tuesday Jun 10, 2014
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In scalar-tensor gravity, black holes do not obey the Jebsen-Birkhoff theorem. Non-isolated black holes can be highly dynamical and the teleological concept of event horizon is replaced by the apparent or trapping horizon. Dynamical solutions describing inhomogeneities embedded in cosmological "backgrounds" and the phenomenology of their apparent horizons, which often appear/vanish in pairs, will be described. Isolated black holes, in contrast, have no hair and are the same as in general relativity.

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