Cosmology is a very active field of research and intense ongoing activity is devoted to the study of how structures grow from the density perturbations emerged after the Big Bang. This book covers the period starting with the recombination of Hydrogen and the release of the cosmic microwave background radiation and ending with the formation of the first galaxies.
The book describes our basic understanding of the processes occurring in the early universe between recombination and reionization of hydrogen. It will address in particular First Light, the formation of the first stars, first galaxies and first active galactic nuclei. The theoretical overview will be followed by a description of current ongoing studies and future observational studies of this era when the first discrete objects formed in the universe.
The book, written in a coherent manner, provides a direct link between newest theory and experiment. It is oriented at cosmological problems rather than at methods and discusses a wide range of experimental techniques to address these problems.
An introductory chapter makes it suitable for young researchers as well as Master and PhD students.
1. Introduction: Basic review of the early Universe
Why reionization is important, what do we expect about first light. Basics about growth of perturbations; basics about CMB
Description of the process of reionization of the Universe; simple analytical considerations; comparison with existing observations
3. From Reionization to First Light
This chapter describes some of the issues regarding the transition from Population III to Population II stars as well as the constraints that can be derived from WMAP
4. First light Description of the formation of the first structures
This chapter describes the state of the art of the numerical modeling and also some analytical considerations
5. Probing the dark ages with galaxies
This chapter highlights future perspectives of studying the dark ages using galaxies as probes; it will discuss future 30m grounds based telescopes, WFC3, JWST
6. Probing the dark ages using backgrounds
Appendix: Relevant formulae and results
Dr. Stiavelli obtained his PhD at the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa in 1986. He has been a postdoctoral researcher at Rutgers University and a fellow at the European Southern Observatory in Garching. He has held positions at the Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa (1992–1995), at the
. European Space Agency in Baltimore (1995–2000), and at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore where he currently has the position of James Webb Space T elescope Project Scientist. He is a member of the American Astronomical Society, of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and of the International Astronomical Union. He has chaired or served on several NASA committees and is a member of the Science Working Group of the James Webb Space Telescope. Stiavelli has observing experience at the major ground based observatories (Mauna Kea, ESO La Silla, ESO Paranal, KPNO, La Palma, Apache Point) and with every imaging instrument on the Hubble Space Telescope. He has authored or coauthored 83 research papers published in professional journals and 148 technical reports and other publications.