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OnderzoekVan Swinderen Institute

Physics: Prof. dr. R. van de Weygaert: The cosmic microwave background echo of the Big Bang


22 March 2007 FWN-Building 5111.0080, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG, Groningen
Speaker: Prof. dr. Rien van de Weygaert
Affiliation: Kapteyn Institute / University of Groningen
Title: The cosmic microwave background echo of the Big Bang
Date: 22-03-2007
Start: 16.00
Location: FWN-Building 5111.0080


The Nobelprize Physics 2006 was awarded to John Mather and George Smoot, for their groundbreaking research on the blackbody spectrum and the first detection of anisotropies in the temperature of the Microwave Background Radiation. The CMB photons, the most abundant particles in our cosmos, constitute the thermal relic radiation field originating in the early Universe. Last scattered 379000 years after the Big Bang, at the epoch of recombination when the temperature of the Universe had dropped to 3000 K and electrons and protons combined to form hydrogen atoms, they define a perfect blackbody spectrum with a present-day temperature of T=2.725 K.

The seminar will treat the cosmological background of the CMB within the context of the Hot Big Bang model, emphasizing the importance of its blackbody character. Subsequently we will direct attention to the formation of structure in the Universe and the significance of the detected angular
m K CMB temperature fluctuations as the embryonic imprint of structure in the primordial Universe.Also, we will argue for its importance as direct proof of an inflationary epoch in the very early Universe.

Last modified:12 September 2014 11.21 a.m.