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Galaxy Clusters: Their Physics and Role in Cosmology
November 30, 201511:30 am – 12:30 pm (CDT)

Galaxy Clusters: Their Physics and Role in Cosmology


Lindsay King (UT, Dallas)



Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics & Astronomy

College Station, Texas 77843

Event Details

In the concordance model of cosmology, most of the universe is in the form of dark components - dark matter, and dark energy in the form of a cosmological constant. It has been proposed that dark energy could instead be varying in time, or that modifications to General Relativity must be made on cosmological scales. Astrophysical probes of massive structures and of the expansion history of the universe are critical to furthering our understanding of the contents of the universe. Massive objects distort space-time, acting as gravitational lenses of the light from distant sources. In this talk, Dr. King will give some examples of our work on lensing phenomena on different scales in the universe, focusing on tools that we are developing to better understand the distribution of mass in and around galaxy clusters. Dr. King will consider prospects for clusters as cosmological probes, particularly using the upcoming Large Synoptic Survey Telescope, and for testing the law of gravity on large scales. Galaxy clusters also provide huge laboratories where the physics of dark and luminous matter, most of which is hot X-ray emitting plasma - can be studied. This part of the talk will outline our investigation of a very rare system where two clusters have violently collided close to the plane of the sky.

Video Recording

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