***This lecture will take place online, Friends of the RAS will be sent a link to register via Eventbrite***
Galaxy surveys reveal vast 3D patterns in space that represent the relics of primordial fluctuations, from which all astronomical structures formed via gravitational collapse. The study of this large-scale structure gives us physical and geometrical insights into the constitution of the universe, especially the accelerating cosmic expansion and the properties of the “dark energy” that causes it. Prof Peacock will review what has been learned in this field over the past decade or so, and present a digest of next-generation experiments that are poised to deliver an order of magnitude advance in the state of the art.
John Peacock is a well-known cosmologist, with research interests at the interface between theory and observation. He has spent most of his career at the Royal Observatory Edinburgh and at the University of Edinburgh, where he was Head of Astronomy from 2007 to 2013. He has written extensively on statistical methods for studying cosmological density fields, including developing the widely-used Halo Model. He was UK Chairman of the 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey (1999-2005). He is the author of "Cosmological Physics", a highly successful postgraduate textbook. Between 2015 and 2021, his work has been supported by an Advanced Grant from the European Research Council. Major awards for his research include election as a Fellow of the Royal Society (2007) and the Shaw Prize in Astronomy (2014).