Cosmological Perturbation Theory, spring 2020

PAP342 Cosmological Perturbation Theory, 10 credits, 13.1-1.5

Lectures (Hannu Kurki-Suonio): Mo 10-12, We 12-14, Physicum A315
First lecture: Monday, Jan 13
Exercises (Elina Keihänen): Fr 14-16, Physicum A315
First exercise session: Jan 24

The Easter break is April 9-15, so there will be no lecture and no new homework given during that time.

Because of the Covid-19 epidemic, the University will be closed from March 18 to May 13.
The course will continue with a combination of self-study and remote instruction as follows:
I will keep updating the lecture notes and I will post on this page instructions on which sections you should read (see Lecture notes below). I will do this on Mondays and Wednesdays, by evening. You can ask questions via e-mail.
The Monday lectures are cancelled until further notice, but on Wednesdays, at 12:30-14:00, there will be a condensed remote lecture as a Zoom meeting, where I go over the sections that you were asked to read and that will be needed for the current homework set. You can also ask questions. The link to connect to it will be e-mailed to registered students.
I will give new homework on Mondays (by evening). You should return your homework solutions on the following Monday. Scan your answers and send them by email to Elina. A photo taken by mobile phone is ok, if you can make it readable.
There will be no exercise sessions during this time. Comments or partial model answers will be posted on this web site.

This is an advanced cosmology course, intended to be lectured every second year. Cosmological perturbation theory forms the core of modern cosmology, starting from the generation of perturbations during inflation and following their evolution to form the structure in the universe we observe today in the distribution of galaxies and dark matter and in the anisotropy of the cosmic microwave background. Expected background: Cosmology I+II, General Relativity.

The course is lectured in English, unless everyone speaks Finnish.
Register for the course in WebOodi

Lecture notes will be provided and updated as the course progresses.

There will be no exam; the grade will be based on homework.
Instead of exam, there will be an additional homework problem set given out on the last week of lectures.
Grading: 45% of max points = 1/5, 55% = 2/5, 65% = 3/5, 75% = 4/5, 85% = 5/5.

You can give feedback on the course in WebOodi after the last lecure.

Lecture notes

The lecture notes are based on my notes from 2015. I am updating these notes as the course progresses, adding also some new material. Thus you may not want to print much more of these notes than what has already been discussed in class. Probably not all of the existing material in these notes will be covered in the course.
Cosmological Perturbation Theory, part 1, 16.3.2020 version
Cosmological Perturbation Theory, part 2, 25.5.2020 version
Wed, March 18: The new material that you should read is Sections 1-3 from part 2 of lecture notes (Section 1 was already covered in class on Monday). Note that you should read the 19.3.2020 version that was put here on Thursday late afternoon.
Mon, March 23: Read Sections 4-5. The new homework problems (set 8) are related to Sections 3-5.
Wed, March 25: Read Section 6.
Mon, March 30: Read Section 7 until (and including) subsection 7.5.1. The new homework (set 9) is related to Sections 5 - 7.5.1.
Wed, April 1: Read Sections 7.5 and 7.6.
Mon, April 6: Read Sections 7.7 and 8.
We jump now to modified gravity topics (Secs. 15-17) and return to many-field inflation (Secs. 8-10) later.
Wed, April 8: Read Sections 15 and 16.
Easter break April 9-15.
Mon, April 20: Read Section 17.
Wed, April 22: Read Sections 9, 10.1, 10.2, and 10.3.
Mon, April 27: Read Sections 10.4, 10.5, 10.6, and 10.7. The new homework (set 12) is related to Sections 10.1-8.
Wed, April 29: Read Sections 10.8 and 10.10.

Homework problem sets

Homework 1
Homework 2
Homework 3
Homework 4
Homework 5
Homework 6
Homework 7
No new homework problems on week March 16-20
Homework 8
Homework 9
Homework 10
Homework 11
Homework 12 (the last one; note that you have until May 11th to do these)
Return your solutions to homework problems to Elina by e-mail.

Exercise points

Exercise points and final grades after the last digits of the student number
Updated 15.5.2020.


V.F. Mukhanov, H.A. Feldman, and R.H.Brandenberger: Theory of Cosmological Perturbations, Phys. Rep. 215, 213 (1992)
C.-P. Ma and E. Bertschinger: Cosmological perturbation theory in the synchronous and conformal Newtonian gauges, astro-ph/9506072, Astrophysical Journal 455, 7 (1995)
A.R. Liddle and D.H. Lyth: Cosmological Inflation and Large-Scale Structure (Cambridge University Press 2000)
A.R. Liddle and D.H. Lyth: The Primordial Density Perturbation: Cosmology, Inflation and the Origin of Structure (Cambridge University Press 2009)
L. Amendola et al. (The Euclid Theory Working Group): Cosmology and fundamental physics with the Euclid satellite, arXiv:1606.00180, Living. Rev. Relativ. 21, 2 (2018)

Other courses related to cosmology

Cosmology I and II: The basic courses in cosmology. Lectured every fall term.
General Relativity: Lectured every spring term.
Galaxy Survey Cosmology: An advanced course in cosmology motivated by the Finnish participation in the Euclid satellite project. Concentrates on the distribution of galaxies (their correlation function and its power spectrum) and weak gravitational lensing. Prerequisites: Cosmology I and II and mathematical methods (FYMM I and II). Was lectured last time in spring 2019. Will probably be lectured again in spring 2021.
CMB Physics: An advanced course where the physics of the Cosmic Microwave Background and its anisotropy is discussed in detail. Last lectured fall 2007. Was motivated by the Finnish participation in the Planck satellite project. Currently not in the teaching program.

Last updated: May 25, 2020.