WS20 General Relativity and Cosmology


The lecture is aimed at master students with an interest in theoretical physics. It is an important preparation for a master thesis in theoretical particle physics. 

Please follow these rules if you want to participate in person.


  • The Zoom link for the exercises will be posted on the moodle page.
  • The first lectures will be Zoom only (30/10), please find the Zoom link on Slack or the Moodle page. 
  • Since I have received many emails about this: the lecture is currently (28/10) planned as a hybrid lecture, which means that you can attend in person or connect virtually. Note, that the covid situation is highly dynamical and we might not be allowed into the building next week. Please check this page on Sunday.
  • Room change: we will be in the big lecture hall (HS1).
  • Important: please register for the lecture Slack workspace! This will allow you to ask questions and discuss the problem sheets. You can find the link on the moodle page
  • We will provide a video-link to the lectures (either Zoom or Panopto) and post it on moodle.
  • We changed the starting time of the Monday lecture from 8 to 10:15
  • The first lecture will be on the 2.11. at 10:15  in HS3


  • Lightning review of Special Relativity (see prerequisites).

  • Geodesics in space-time

  • Manifolds, tangent spaces, tensors, and Riemannian geometry

  • Einstein Equations

  • Weak Gravity and Gravitational Waves

  • Black Holes

  • Cosmology


Monday 10:15-12  (HS1, Rudolf-Mößbauer-Hörsaal)
Wednesday 10:15-12  (HS1, Rudolf-Mößbauer-Hörsaal)

Exercise groups

The exercises will start in the second week of the semester. More information about the location and registration will be distributed in due time. Please connect to your group's Slack channel if you have questions.

group 1: Mon 14-16 (Physik HS2)  Tobias Theil

group 2: Mon 12-14 (Physik HS3) Max Ruhdorfer

group 3: Tue 10-12 (Physik HS2) Stefan Stelzl


Relativity chapter in Relativity, Particles, Fields (Latex script.pdf). We have also discussed (quantum-)gravity in the advanced QFT lecture, which is not a pre-requesite but maybe a post-requisite, since I will be teaching it next semester. 


Steven Weinberg - "Gravitation and Cosmology" (1972) and "Cosmology" (2007)
Sean Carroll - "Spacetime and Geometry"
Bob Wald - "General Relativity"
Misner/Thorne/Wheeler - "Gravitation"
Antony Zee - "Einstein Gravity in a Nutshell" (a very big nutshell...)
Landau/Lifschitz - "Classical Field Theory"
Bernard Schutz - "A first course in general relativity"


Lecture Notes

The script together with the lecture videos can be found on moodle.

Exercise Sheets

Exercise coordination: P. Baratella, J. Serra, and E. Venturini (Please use slack to ask questions)

Exercise bonus: in order to obtain the +0.3 bonus (applicable to the first exam attempt, and only to passing grades) you will need to attend regularly the tutorials, present/discuss the solution of at least one exercise, and hand in solutions for at least 50% of the total number of exercises.

1. Sheet 1

You can find all the following sheets on the moodle page. Please submit your solutions on moodle.