Cosmology is the study of the universe at large. Physical cosmology is a branch of astrophysics that studies the large-scale structure of the universe, how it was formed, how it evolved and how it might end. This text gives an engineering interpretation of this very interesting field.
The thumbnail image to the right is a miniature version of the best photo of the "baby universe" available. It was compiled from the WMAP project's data of the cosmic microwave background (cmb). (Credit: NASA)
The Cosmology Introduction.pdf that you will find under the links below treats the study of the universe by starting with a simplistic expansion model, which is by nature very easy to understand. The relatively simple Einstein-de Sitter model is then treated to a level that makes it possible to do some “engineering-like” calculations on the cosmos. The reader will easily understand the redshift-distance relationship and the calculation of the age and size of the universe.
The more modern model of the inflationary big bang is treated in enough depth so that engineers may feel comfortable with it. There are plenty of graphs, giving it that “engineering look and feel”. It goes further and illustrates the expanding universe in an interesting way. At the end if this easy-read, you may never look at the sky (especially at night) and think about the cosmos in the same way again.
Finally, the modern “dark energy” driven expansion is discussed comprehensively. This is a hot topic in cosmology today (around the turn of the century). Although nobody knows what this “dark energy” is, it (and its cousin, “dark matter”) seems to be out there in abundance. As can be expected, mathematics is needed, but like always, it is kept at an easily accessible “engineering level.”
The pages linked below will give you introductions to the topics and instructions for opening and/or downloading the relevant pdf pages.
The equations for some cosmological distances, with graphs.
The above links lead to stand-alone descriptions. The eBook Relativity 4 Engineers integrates them with relativity theory, giving a complete picture. Take a look at the special offer (less than $10) on the eBook Relativity 4 Engineers. This link will take you to a page describing the eBook and its content. Or you can just click on the thumbnail on the left, taking you to a secure ClickBank site for payment and immediate download of the complete (and up to date) eBook.
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