General Relativity — Einstein’s theory of gravity — predicts many spectacular phenomena, such as black holes and gravitational lensing, and provides the basis to our understanding of the Universe and its evolution at the largest scales. The standard cosmological model has been developed into a very accurate theory of the dynamics of the Universe, both at the largest observable distances and back in time to almost its very beginning. Especially intriguing is the discovery, made around the turn of the millenium, that the expansion of the Universe is not slowing down but accelerating. This hints at the possible existence of an unknown "dark energy" which fills the universe with negative pressure. [+]
ICCUB researchers carry out research in the areas of gravity, particle physics and the gauge/gravity correspondence. In the area of gravity, research is focused on the study of black holes in string theory and in higher-dimensional spacetimes, inflationary models and quantum gravity in de Sitter spaces. Finally, the gauge/gravity correspondence is applied to the study of the quark-gluon plasma and the computation of observables in gauge theories.