RSAA Colloquia / Seminars / Feast-of-Facts: Thursday, 17 September 2015, 16:00-17:00; Seminar: Department of Quantum Science, held in Psychology G6

Richard Easther

"Cosmology: Where We Are and What Happens Next?"

In the space of a generation, cosmology has been transformed from an almost entirely theoretical activity into a rigorous, empirical science; I will describe the resulting ’concordance cosmology’ which accounts for the overall properties of our universe and identify (some of!) its weaknesses. One of the most exciting aspects of this new age of precision cosmology is that the evolving universe yields evidence for ’new physics’, including dark energy and dark matter. Interestingly, some theories of dark matter and dark energy can be tested with precision laboratory and space-based experiments, and I will survey current and future opportunities for experimental physicists to put constraints on cosmological physics.