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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

IAS Christopherson Knott Fellow's Seminar - The Origin of the Universe: Seeking Contemporary Answers to Ancient Questions

26th January 2015, 13:00 to 14:00, Seminar Room, Institute of Advanced Study, Cosin's Hall, Palace Green, Professor Richard Bower, Durham University


"How old is the Universe? How was it created? What will happen to it in the future? These are questions that are addressed by modern cosmologists, using the "laws of physics" and state-of-the art supercomputers to simulate how the Universe is created. But the questions answered are not new, indeed they are probably as old as human consciousness. This seminar focuses on the question of the origin of the Universe, and ideas about its perfection. The aim is not so much to present the contemporary answer, but to look at how the picture has changed over the millennia. Computer simulations present the creation of the Universe, contrasting the results derived from Robert Grosseteste's Medieval treatise with the state-of-the-art EAGLE Universe simulation project.

Aspects of the project have been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (the Ordered Universe project, Gasper & Smithson) and the Science and Technology Research Council (the EAGLE project, Schaye & Bower)"

Fellows' seminars take place on Monday lunchtimes in the seminar room at Cosin's Hall.

Places are limited and so any academic colleagues interested in attending a seminar should contact the Institute in advance to reserve a place.

The aim of these seminars is to develop new thinking on the big issues that are of current concern/interest for the Fellows . Each Fellow is asked to present a core idea that informs their current work, or a problem that they are tackling, that could benefit from cross-disciplinary thinking. These seminars are informal and designed to encourage discussion.

Contact for more information about this event.