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Inflationary universe subject of public lecture

by Mar. 4, 2011, 10:12 AM

Cosmologist Paul Steinhardt (Photo courtesy of Paul Steinhardt)

Today, the idea that the universe expanded dramatically for a period of time after its birth in the Big Bang is one of the cornerstones of modern cosmology. However, Paul Steinhardt, the Albert Einstein Professor of Science at Princeton University, will provide an “unconventional perspective” on this theory in a free public lecture titled, “Inflationary Cosmology on Trial.”

The talk will be held on Thursday, March 17, at 4 p.m. in room 4327 in the Stevenson Center on the Vanderbilt campus. It will be preceded by a reception at 3:30 p.m. in room 6333 in Stevenson Center.

Steinhardt is this year’s guest speaker in the Seyfert lecture series sponsored by the Department of Physics and Astronomy and Dyer Observatory. He was one of the architects of the inflationary model of the universe, which described this period of early expansion. In addition to authoring more than 200 scientific articles and three technical books, he co-authored Endless Universe: The Big Bang and Beyond, a popular book on cosmology in 2007.