After the hot Big Bang the Universe expanded and cooled, eventually
turning the primordial soup of particles into a sea of neutral gas.
This process started the period in the evolution of the Universe
referred to as the "Dark Ages", since during that time there was
no light in the Universe save the faint glow remaining from the
Big Bang. The small density inhomogeneities left over from the
period of fast initial expansion gradually grew under the force of
gravity, and eventually formed the First Stars and Galaxies. The
light from these first objects slowly reionized the whole
intergalactic medium and ended the Dark Ages. This transition had
profound effects on the formation and character of the early
cosmological structures and left deep impressions on subsequent
galaxy and star formation, some of which last up to the present day.
Within this broad area there are several possible projects which will
study different facets of this complex picture. The main questions
include: how the first cosmic structures formed and what were their
feedback effects, how reionization progressed and what observational
signatures it yielded, and how it affected latter-time galaxy formation
and our own neighbourhood in the Universe.
Please use the links below for more details about individual projects.
Effects of the soft ultraviolet radiation on the progress of reionization
and on the redshifted 21-cm signal