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Syllabus for

Academic year
FFM071 - Gravitation and cosmology
Owner: TTFYA
5,0 Credits (ECTS 7,5)
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Not passed
Level: D

Teaching language: English

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 No Sp
0101 Examination 5,0 c Grading: TH   5,0 c   Contact examiner,  Contact examiner

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Professor  Martin Cederwall


For single subject courses within Chalmers programmes the same eligibility requirements apply, as to the programme(s) that the course is part of.

Course specific prerequisites

Newtonian mechanics, algebra, special theory of relativity, electromagnetic field theory.


Einstein formulated the theory of general relativity as a theory for gravity in 1915. It has been verified with increasing precision during the years, and is established as the actual theory for gravitation. It gives a model for the development of the universe and gives a host of fascinating predictions. During the last century, many of them have been verified, eg. the background radiation and black holes. There is now a quite clear understanding of the principles behind the development of the universe.

The course gives a description of the theory of general relativity, starting from the equivalence principle.

The aims of the course are:
- To give an understanding of the mathematics of curved spaces and space-times.
- To give an understanding of how the presence of matter and energy affects the geometry of space-time.
- To give a basic knowledge of cosmology.
- To provide a basis for further theoretical studies.


To use tensors for general coordinate invariance to reach Einstein's equations for the gravitational field. To study and deal with gravitational radiation, black holes, symmetric spaces and standard models for cosmology.


History, special relativity, the equivalence principle, gravitational forces, general covariance, tensor analysis, gravitational effects in particle mechanics and electrodynamics, curvature, Einstein's field equations, the Schwarzschild solution, black holes, gravitational radiation, symmetric spaces, cosmography, standard model for cosmology, the development of the universe.


Lectures, exercise classes (6h/week)


S Weinberg: Gravitation and Cosmology: Principles and Applications of the General Theory of Relativity. John Wiley & Sons Inc. 1972.


Home assignments, home examination, oral examination

Page manager Published: Thu 03 Nov 2022.