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Particle Physics and Early Universe


Admission Requirements

Bachelor of Physics with the course Physics of Elementary Particles or a clear equivalent. Recommended Origin and Structure of the Standard Model and Origin and Evolution of the Universe

Course description

This course will discuss how particle physics defines physics of the early universe, the subsequent cosmological scenario and the current state of the universe. Starting with basics of the Standard Model of particle physics (SM), we will see how the whole intricate structure of this theory exhibits itself in a hot and dense, quickly expanding universe. We will demonstrate that this allows to use astrophysical and cosmological observational data to check the SM. The next part will discuss the shortcomings of the Standard Model and different approaches to resolve them, as well as implications of this beyond the SM physics for the early universe (most importantly: the nature of dark matter, dark energy, mechanisms of baryogenesis and inflation).

  • Primoridal nucleosynthesis and big bang theory

  • Neutrinos in the early univrese and relic neutrinos at present epoch

  • Dark matter: evidence, DM particles, massive neutrinos as dark matter.

  • Neutrino masses, mixing angle, CP violation

  • DM as beyond the SM physics. Possible properties of non-SM DM particles: WIMPs, super-WIMPs, axions

  • Basic ideas of effective field theory and the structure of the Standard Model of particle physics.

  • Neutrino masses as BSM physics

  • The problem of baryogenesis. Baryogenesis as a beyond SM phenomenon

  • An overview of various beyond SM scenarios and their implications for cosmology.

Course objectives

The course will give an overview of cosmological observations, which are interested for particle physics. Students will obtain practical knowledge in relativistic quantum mechanics, BBN, neutrino physics, dark matter properties calculation.

Soft skills

You will be able to

  • learn to make a relation between mathematical models and physical systems, in both directions

  • improve you skills of planning time for doing weakly assignments

Mode of instruction

Lectures and Seminars

Assessment method

Homeworks – 40%
Written exam – 60%
Final grade is a sum of grades for the homeworks and exam.
Exam can be retaken

Reading list

-Introduction to the Theory of the Early Universe: Hot Big Bang Theory by D.Gorbunov & V.Rubakov, World Scientific, 2010;
-Principles of physical cosmology by P.J.E. Peebles, Princeton University Press, 1993; - by J.Garcia-Bellido