**Gravity (Q)**

*Last offered Spring 2014*

This course is an introduction to the currently accepted theory of gravity, Einstein's general relativity. We begin with a review of special relativity, emphasizing geometrical aspects of Minkowski spacetime. Working from the equivalence principle, we then motivate gravity as spacetime curvature, and study in detail the Schwarzschild geometry around a spherically symmetric mass. After this application, we use tensors to develop Einstein's equation, which describes how energy density curves spacetime. With this equation in hand we study the Friedmann-Robertson-Walker geometries for an expanding universe, and finally, we linearize Einstein's equation to develop the theory of gravitational waves.

**lecture, three hours per week**

*Class Format:***evaluation will be based on weekly problem sets, a midterm exam, and a final exam, all with a substantial quantitative component**

*Requirements/Evaluation:***not available for the Gaudino option**

*Additional Info:*

*Additional Info2:***PHYS 301 or PHYS 405 or PHYS 411; students with strong math backgrounds are invited to consult with the instructor about a possible waiving of the prerequisites**

*Prerequisites:*

*Enrollment Preference:*

*Department Notes:*

*Material and Lab Fees:*

*Distribution Notes:***Division III,Quantitative and Formal Reasoning**

*Divisional Attributes:*

*Other Attributes:***none**

*Enrollment Limit:***19**

*Expected Enrollment:***3852**

*Class Number:*CLASSES | ATTR | INSTRUCTORS | TIMES | CLASS NUMBER |
---|---|---|---|---|

PHYS 418 LEC Gravity (Q) | David R. Tucker-Smith |