Written by a well-known author in the field, this book presents a modern understanding of the universe based on relativity, quantum physics and their elusive combination. It introduces the crucial theoretical ingredients in an accessible way, starting from the physics of Newton and developing subsequent theories all the way to the modern enigma of quantum gravity. The intermediate level presentation assumes only a general knowledge of math and physics, adopting a 'two-level' approach: equations are retained throughout the chapters but set apart from the main text in boxes to allow for lay readers to understand the book. For scientists, researchers, students and lecturers in cosmology, astronomy, gravitation, quantum and theoretical physics; as well as mathematicians, students, lecturers, academics and non-experts in related fields with an interest in the subject. Martin Bojowald teaches physics at the Pennsylvania State University, USA, and is a member of the Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos. Having received his Ph.D. degree from Aachen University, Germany, he has spent most of his time since at Penn State, except for a 2-year period at the Albert-Einstein-Institute in Potsdam, Germany. He has authored over 100 publications, including several popular articles and a couple of books. For his work in quantum cosmology he has received the First Award of the Essay Competition by the Gravity Research Foundation in 2003, and the Xanthopoulos Prize from the International Society on General Relativity and Gravitation in 2007.
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