Recent articles from Computational Astrophysics and Cosmology

I’m writing to let you know about some of the recent articles we’ve published in Computational Astrophysics and Cosmology (CompAC).

With this open-access journal we hope to make the connection between the computational science and the astrophysics communities. In that respect I hope that you will enjoy reading these pioneering papers as much as I have enjoyed them. The following list of publications reflects only a small part of the range in scientific topics we seek for in this journal.

Recent articles:

– “Riemann solvers and Alfven waves in black hole magnetospheres” by B Punsly, D Balsara, J Kim and S Garain
– “In situ and in-transit analysis of cosmological simulations” by B Friesen, A Almgren, Z Lukic, G Weber, D Morozov, V Beckner and M Day
– “Achieving convergence in galaxy formation models by augmenting N-body merger trees” by A J Benson, C Cannella and S Cole
– “Simulations of stripped core-collapse supernovae in close binaries” by A Rimoldi, S Portegies Zwart and E M Rossi

If you are interested in submitting your own work to CompAC, you’ll find all the submission guidelines at the journal’s home page:

I look forward to reading your work.

Kind regards,
Simon Portegies Zwart
Computational Astrophysics and Cosmology

Living Reviews in Relativity: “Extraction of gravitational waves in numerical relativity”

The open-access journal Living Reviews in Relativity has published a new review article on “Extraction of gravitational waves in numerical relativity” by Nigel T. Bishop and Luciano Rezzolla on 4 October 2016 (metadata correction 10 November 2016):

Bishop, N.T. and Rezzolla, L.,
“Extraction of gravitational waves in numerical relativity”,
Living Rev Relativ (2016) 19: 2.

A numerical-relativity calculation yields in general a solution of the Einstein equations including also a radiative part, which is in practice computed in a region of finite extent. Since gravitational radiation is properly defined only at null infinity and in an appropriate coordinate system, the accurate estimation of the emitted gravitational waves represents an old and non-trivial problem in numerical relativity. A number of methods have been developed over the years to “extract” the radiative part of the solution from a numerical simulation and these include: quadrupole formulas, gauge-invariant metric perturbations, Weyl scalars, and characteristic extraction. We review and discuss each method, in terms of both its theoretical background as well as its implementation. Finally, we provide a brief comparison of the various methods in terms of their inherent advantages and disadvantages.

CQG Highlights of 2015 now live

The latest collection of CQG Highlights, selected by the Editorial Board is now available and will be free to read until December 2016. Read the CQG Highlights here:

Publish your next paper in CQG for the chance to be selected for next year’s Highlights.

GRG Editor’s Choice articles free to read

On the occasion of the upcoming GR21 conference, selected articles from the journal General Relativity and Gravitation are now free-to-read until July 31, 2016:

In each volume, a few papers are marked as “Editor’s Choice”. The primary criteria is original, high quality research that is of wide interest within the community. We would also like to introduce Springer’s new article interface, optimized for easy reading on mobile devices.

General Relativity and Gravitation is a journal devoted to all aspects of modern gravitational science, and published under the auspices of the ISGRG. The journal publishes research letters and papers, invited review articles on all theoretical and experimental aspects of modern general relativity and gravitation, as well as book reviews and historical articles of special interest.

We welcome your submissions, and see you at GR21!

Living Reviews in Relativity: “Prospects for Observing and Localizing Gravitational-Wave Transients with Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo”

Living Reviews in Relativity has published a new article on “Prospects for Observing and Localizing Gravitational-Wave Transients with Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo” by the LIGO Scientific Collaboration and the Virgo Collaboration on 8 February 2016.

Please find the abstract and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2016-1
B. P. Abbott et al. (The LIGO Scientific Collaboration and the Virgo Collaboration)
“Prospects for Observing and Localizing Gravitational-Wave Transients with Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo”

ACCEPTED: 2016-01-22
PUBLISHED: 2016-02-08


We present a possible observing scenario for the Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo gravitational-wave detectors over the next decade, with the intention of providing information to the astronomy community to facilitate planning for multi-messenger astronomy with gravitational waves. We determine the expected sensitivity of the network to transient gravitational-wave signals, and study the capability of the network to determine the sky location of the source. We report our findings for gravitational-wave transients, with particular focus on gravitational-wave signals from the inspiral of binary neutron-star systems, which are considered the most promising for multi-messenger astronomy. The ability to localize the sources of the detected signals depends on the geographical distribution of the detectors and their relative sensitivity, and 90% credible regions can be as large as thousands of square degrees when only two sensitive detectors are operational. Determining the sky position of a significant fraction of detected signals to areas of 5 deg^2 to 20 deg^2 will require at least three detectors of sensitivity within a factor of ~2 of each other and with a broad frequency bandwidth. Should the third LIGO detector be relocated to India as expected, a significant fraction of gravitational-wave signals will be localized to a few square degrees by gravitational-wave observations alone.


English translation of the last and very rare book by A. A. Friedmann (coauthored with V. K. Frederiks)

Vsevolod K. Frederiks, Alexander A. Friedmann, Foundations of the Theory of Relativity: Volume 1 Tensor Calculus (Minkowski Institute Press, Montreal 2015), 182 pages

To mark the 100th anniversary of Einstein’s general relativity the Minkowski Institute Press publishes the first English translation of a very rare book on general relativity (its only Russian publication was in 1924), which turned out to be the last book by A. A. Friedmann (co-authored with V. K. Frederiks). This is the first and the only published volume of a five-volume book project on the foundations of the theory of relativity, brutally terminated by the untimely and tragic death of Friedmann on 16 September 1925. Despite the fact that this book was published in 1924 and despite the presence of some unconventional notions and notations in it, this is still a valuable book, because it is written by two deep thinkers, particularly Friedmann who in 1922 had the deepest understanding of the cosmological implications of Einstein’s general relativity when he first showed that the Universe may expand (which was later discovered by Hubble). What also makes this book valuable is that Frederiks and Friedmann develop the formalism of tensor calculus from a physical point of view by showing why the ideas of general relativity need that formalism. In this sense the book can be even used for self-study.

Living Reviews: “Terrestrial Gravity Fluctuations” / “Grid-based Methods in RHD and RMHD”

Living Reviews in Relativity has published a new review article on “Terrestrial Gravity Fluctuations” by Jan Harms on 2 December 2015.

Living Reviews in Computational Astrophysics has published a new review article on “Grid-based Methods in Relativistic Hydrodynamics and Magnetohydrodynamics” by Jose Maria Marti and Ewald Mueller on 22 December 2015.

Please find the abstracts and further details below.


PUB.NO. lrca-2015-3
Marti, Jose Maria and Mueller, Ewald
“Grid-based Methods in Relativistic Hydrodynamics and Magnetohydrodynamics”

ACCEPTED: 2015-12-01
PUBLISHED: 2015-12-22


An overview of grid-based numerical methods used in relativistic hydrodynamics (RHD) and magnetohydrodynamics (RMHD) is presented. Special emphasis is put on a comprehensive review of the application of high-resolution shock-capturing methods. Results of a set of demanding test bench simulations obtained with different numerical methods are compared in an attempt to assess the present capabilities and limits of the various numerical strategies. Applications to three astrophysical phenomena are briefly discussed to motivate the need for and to demonstrate the success of RHD and RMHD simulations in their understanding. The review further provides FORTRAN programs to compute the exact solution of the Riemann problem in RMHD, and to simulate 1D RMHD flows in Cartesian coordinates.



PUB.NO. lrr-2015-3
Harms, Jan
“Terrestrial Gravity Fluctuations”

ACCEPTED: 2015-11-16
PUBLISHED: 2015-12-02


Different forms of fluctuations of the terrestrial gravity field are observed by gravity experiments. For example, atmospheric pressure fluctuations generate a gravity-noise foreground in measurements with super-conducting gravimeters. Gravity changes caused by high-magnitude earthquakes have been detected with the satellite gravity experiment GRACE, and we expect high-frequency terrestrial gravity fluctuations produced by ambient seismic fields to limit the sensitivity of ground-based gravitational-wave (GW) detectors. Accordingly, terrestrial gravity fluctuations are considered noise and signal depending on the experiment. Here, we will focus on ground-based gravimetry. This field is rapidly progressing through the development of GW detectors. The technology is pushed to its current limits in the advanced generation of the LIGO and Virgo detectors, targeting gravity strain sensitivities better than 10^-23 Hz^-1/2 above a few tens of a Hz. Alternative designs for GW detectors evolving from traditional gravity gradiometers such as torsion bars, atom interferometers, and superconducting gradiometers are currently being developed to extend the detection band to frequencies below 1 Hz. The goal of this article is to provide the analytical framework to describe terrestrial gravity perturbations in these experiments. Models of terrestrial gravity perturbations related to seismic fields, atmospheric disturbances, and vibrating, rotating or moving objects, are derived and analyzed. The models are then used to evaluate passive and active gravity noise mitigation strategies in GW detectors, or alternatively, to describe their potential use in geophysics. The article reviews the current state of the field, and also presents new analyses especially with respect to the impact of seismic scattering on gravity perturbations, active gravity noise cancellation, and time-domain models of gravity perturbations from atmospheric and seismic point sources. Our understanding of terrestrial gravity fluctuations will have great impact on the future development of GW detectors and high-precision gravimetry in general, and many open questions need to be answered still as emphasized in this article.


New book “Space-time relativity and gravitation” by L. Verozub

Dear hyperspace community,

I would like to announce a new book “Space-time relativity and gravitation”

“The book is devoted to the development of Einstein’s theory of gravitation, based on the relativity of space-time and projectively invariant equations of gravitation. It eliminates contradiction of the theory with the modern field theory, because both descriptions of gravity – as a curvature of the Riemannian space-time and as a field in Minkowski space – are not mutually exclusive. On this basis, some of the fundamental problems of the theory and relativistic astrophysics are revised. It is shown, in particular, that the spherically symmetric field does not have a singularity, the energy of the gravitational field of a point mass is finite, and the accelerated expansion of the Universe is a consequence of gravity properties. The book is intended for physicists and astrophysicists. However, it is also apprehensible for senior students”

ISBN: 978-3-659-75511-8

Lambert Acad. Publ., 2015

The book is available at Amazon

Living Reviews in Computational Astrophysics: first articles online

Living Reviews in Computational Astrophysics is a new peer-reviewed open-access journal. Founded and supported by the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Garching, the new member of the pioneering Living Reviews family is published by Springer International.

The journal aims at offering a comprehensive survey of research in computational astrophysics that physicists will know is up-to-date and reliable. Living Reviews is unique in that it only publishes high-quality review articles whose authors commit to update them regularly. This is the meaning of the word “living” in the journal’s title.

Living Reviews in Computational Astrophysics now started publication with its first two review articles: “SPH Methods in the Modelling of Compact Objects” by Stephan Rosswog and “Large Eddy Simulations in Astrophysics” by Wolfram Schmidt.

Please find the abstracts and further details below.

Stephan Rosswog
SPH Methods in the Modelling of Compact Objects


We review the current status of compact object simulations that are based on the smooth particle hydrodynamics (SPH) method. The first main part of this review is dedicated to SPH as a numerical method. We begin by discussing relevant kernel approximation techniques and discuss the performance of different kernel functions. Subsequently, we review a number of different SPH formulations of Newtonian, special- and general relativistic ideal fluid dynamics. We particularly point out recent developments that increase the accuracy of SPH with respect to commonly used techniques. The second main part of the review is dedicated to the application of SPH in compact object simulations. We discuss encounters between two white dwarfs, between two neutron stars and between a neutron star and a stellar-mass black hole. For each type of system, the main focus is on the more common, gravitational wave-driven binary mergers, but we also discuss dynamical collisions as they occur in dense stellar systems such as cores of globular clusters.

Wolfram Schmidt
“Large Eddy Simulations in Astrophysics””


In this review, the methodology of large eddy simulations (LES) is introduced and applications in astrophysics are discussed. As theoretical framework, the scale decomposition of the dynamical equations for neutral fluids by means of spatial filtering is explained. For cosmological applications, the filtered equations in comoving coordinates are also presented. To obtain a closed set of equations that can be evolved in LES, several subgrid-scale models for the interactions between numerically resolved and unresolved scales are discussed, in particular the subgrid-scale turbulence energy equation model. It is then shown how model coefficients can be calculated, either by dynamic procedures or, a priori, from high-resolution data. For astrophysical applications, adaptive mesh refinement is often indispensable. It is shown that the subgrid-scale turbulence energy model allows for a particularly elegant and physically well-motivated way of preserving momentum and energy conservation in adaptive mesh refinement (AMR) simulations. Moreover, the notion of shear-improved models for inhomogeneous and non-stationary turbulence is introduced. Finally, applications of LES to turbulent combustion in thermonuclear supernovae, star formation and feedback in galaxies, and cosmological structure formation are reviewed.


Living Reviews in Relativity resumes publication

Living Reviews in Relativity had been recently acquired by Springer and has now resumed publication with two new review articles: “Exploring New Physics Frontiers Through Numerical Relativity” by Vitor Cardoso et al. and “The Hubble Constant” (major update) by Neal Jackson.

Please find the abstracts and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2015-1
Vitor Cardoso, Leonardo Gualtieri, Carlos A. R. Herdeiro and Ulrich Sperhake,
“Exploring New Physics Frontiers Through Numerical Relativity”

PUBLISHED: 2015-09-21


The demand to obtain answers to highly complex problems within strong-field gravity has been met with significant progress in the numerical solution of Einstein’s equations – along with some spectacular results – in various setups. We review techniques for solving Einstein’s equations in generic spacetimes, focusing on fully nonlinear evolutions but also on how to benchmark those results with perturbative approaches. The results address problems in high-energy physics, holography, mathematical physics, fundamental physics, astrophysics and cosmology.

PUB.NO. lrr-2015-2
Neal Jackson
“The Hubble Constant” (major update)

PUBLISHED: 2015-09-24


I review the current state of determinations of the Hubble constant, which gives the lengthscale of the Universe by relating the expansion velocity of objects to their distance. There are two broad categories of measurements. The first uses individual astrophysical objects which have some property that allows their intrinsic luminosity or size to be determined, or allows the determination of their distance by geometric means. The second category comprises the use of all-sky cosmic microwave background, or correlations between large samples of galaxies, to determine information about the geometry of the Universe and hence the Hubble constant, typically in a combination with other cosmological parameters. Many, but not all, object-based measurements give H_0 values of around 72 – 74 km s^–1 Mpc^–1, with typical errors of 2 – 3 km s^–1 Mpc^–1. This is in mild discrepancy with CMB-based measurements, in particular those from the Planck satellite, which give values of 67 – 68 km s^–1 Mpc^–1 and typical errors of 1 – 2 km s^–1 Mpc^–1. The size of the remaining systematics indicate that accuracy rather than precision is the remaining problem in a good determination of the Hubble constant. Whether a discrepancy exists, and whether new physics is needed to resolve it, depends on details of the systematics of the object-based methods, and also on the assumptions about other cosmological parameters and which datasets are combined in the case of the all-sky methods.


New book: “Superradiance” by R. Brito, V. Cardoso and P. Pani

Dear hyperspace community,

We would like to announce the publication of a new book on the physics of superradiance, co-authored by R. Brito, V. Cardoso and P. Pani, Springer Lecture Notes in Physics vol. 906 (2015).

Details of the book are available at

or in Amazon

This volume gives a unified picture of the multifaceted subject of superradiance, with a focus on recent developments in the field, ranging from fundamental physics to astrophysics. The book covers all our current understanding on the physics of the amplification of waves by a medium, including classical effects such as the Cherenkov effect. The main body of the book deals with superradiance in black hole physics, with important applications in astrophysics and particle physics. Each chapter ends with a list of outstanding open problems and future directions.

Best wishes to all,

Richard Brito, Vitor Cardoso, Paolo Pani

New book: “Cosmological and Black Hole Apparent Horizons” by V. Faraoni

Dear hyperspace community,

I would like to announce the publication of a new book which may be of interest to some of you: “Cosmological and Black Hole Apparent Horizons” by V. Faraoni, 199 pages, 8 figures,
Springer Lecture Notes in Physics vol. 907 (2015)
ISBN:978-3-319-19239-0 (Print) 978-3-319-19240-6 (Online)
Details of the book are available at

Best wishes to all,

Valerio Faraoni
Physics Department
Bishop’s University
Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada

New Book: “Einstein’s Apple : Homogeneous Einstein Fields” by Engelbert L. Schucking and Eugene J. Surowitz

After 15 years of effort to grow this apple tree, it has finally dropped its first fruit, namely our volume “Einstein’s Apple” which is now available in hardcover and e-book formats from World Scientific via

The work provides an accessible introduction to concepts such as teleparallelism and torsion that are slighted in many courses; historical introduction sections include the early uses of these concepts and Einstein’s own early insights.

Cheers, Eugene Surowitz

New book: “Introduction to General Relativity, Black Holes and Cosmology”, by Y. Choquet-Bruhat

Dear Colleagues in General Relativity

To please the kind staff of Oxford University Press, and myself, I send you as propaganda for my last book “Introduction to General Relativity, Black Holes and Cosmology”, whose details can also be found at this website:

With best wishes to all

Yvonne Choquet-Bruhat

New Book: “Differential Forms and The Geometry of General Relativity” by Tevian Dray

I am pleased to announce the publication of my book: “Differential Forms and The Geometry of General Relativity”, by Tevian Dray, 321 pages; 85 figures.
A K Peters/CRC Press, 2015.

Publication details are available at:
This book emphasizes the use of differential forms to describe general relativity.

Online versions of the two parts of the book also exist in both wiki and PDF formats, and are available at:

Please note that the online versions do not contain all of the editorial changes in the print edition.

Tevian Dray
Professor of Mathematics
Oregon State University

New publication of Eddington’s Report on the Relativity Theory of Gravitation

The latest book published by the Minkowski Institute Press ( is:

Arthur S. Eddington, Report on the Relativity Theory of Gravitation (Minkowski Institute Press, Montreal 2014), 146 pages:

This volume contains new publications of two important works that have never been published together and are two firsts: (i) A. S. Eddington’s Report on the Relativity Theory of Gravitation (2ed, Fleetway Press, London 1920), which was the first systematic exposition of Einstein’s general relativity, and (ii) the first experimental test of general relativity carried out by F. W. Dyson, A. S. Eddington and C. Davidson and reported in the paper “A Determination of the Deflection of Light by the Sun’s Gravitational Field, from Observations Made at the Total Eclipse of May 29, 1919” (Phil. Trans. R. Soc. Lond. A 1920 220, pp. 291-333). 
The answer to the question “Why should Eddington’s Report be reprinted again, given that there exist hundreds of excellent books on general relativity?” was given in 1983 by the renowned astrophysicist and recipient of the 1983 Nobel Prize for Physics S. Chandrasekhar: “Eddington’s Report is written so clearly and yet so concisely that it can be read, even today, as a good introductory text by a beginning student.”

Vesselin Petkov

New CQG focus issue on Advanced Interferometric Gravitational Wave Detectors, P. Shawhan and M.-A. Bizouard Editors

Dear Colleagues,

I am delighted to present this focus issue which brings together articles on the new generation of gravitational wave detectors.

The quest to detect gravitational waves directly has accelerated in the past decade with the successful operation of a first generation of large interferometric detectors. The lessons learned from the first-generation detectors fed into the design of advanced detectors which are now being constructed and commissioned and will soon begin collecting data. Higher laser power, sophisticated mirror suspensions and numerous other improvements will extend the distance reach of the detectors by an order of magnitude and finally record the tiny gravitational-wave signals traversing Earth. This focus issue examines the advanced techniques and detectors currently being assembled, tested and prepared.

Currently, the focus issue features articles from the GEO600 and KAGRA collaborations. Articles from the Advanced Virgo and Advanced LIGO collaborations will be added to the issue soon.

I hope you enjoy reading about the latest developments on these experiments.

Kind regards,

Ben Sheard
Publishing Editor
Classical and Quantum Gravity
IOP Publishing

Publication of the MG13 proceedings and first parallel sessions of the next MG14 (Rome, 2015)

The proceedings of the MG13 Meeting on General Relativity (Stockholm University, Sweden, 1 – 7 July 2012), edited by: Kjell Rosquist (Stockholm University, Sweden), Robert T Jantzen (Villanova University, USA) and Remo Ruffini (International Center for Relativistic Astrophysics Network (ICRANet), Italy & University of Rome “Sapienza”, Italy) are ready and will be printed and distributed by the end of 2014.

The three volumes of the proceedings of MG13 (see <>) give a broad view of all aspects of gravitational physics and astrophysics, from mathematical issues to recent observations and experiments. The scientific program of the meeting included 33 morning plenary talks during 6 days, and 75 parallel sessions over 4 afternoons.

Meanwhile, continues the organizers’ work on the program of the next MG14 of Rome, 2015.

We can anticipate the first confirmed parallel sessions:

Self-forces and small-mass-ratio binaries (Adam Pound)
Post-Newtonian and Analytic Approximations (Alexandre Le Tiec)
Binary Black Holes as Sources of Multi-messenger Astronomy (Pablo Laguna)
Numerical Analysis of Coalescing Binaries (Masaru Shibata)
Results and Strategies in Dark Matter Detection (Rita Bernabei)
Blazar (Paolo Giommi, Paolo Padovani)
Extended Theories of Gravity (Salvatore Capozziello)
Gravitational fields with sources: From compact objects to black holes (José P. S. Lemos, Paolo Pani)
Black holes in binary stellar systems and galactic nuclei (Anatoly M. Cherepaschuck, Stanislav O.Alexeyev)
Cosmic Microwave Background measurements (Silvia Masi, Paolo de Bernardis)
Cosmology with the Cosmic Microwave Background: Implications of Planck and Other Experiments in Temperature and Polarization (Carlo Burigana, Hans Ulrik Nørgaard-Nielsen)
Dark Energy and the Accelerating Universe (Alexei Starobinski, David Polarski)
Theoretical and Mathematical Cosmology (Alan Coley, David Wiltshire)
Semiclassical and Quantum Cosmology  (Paulo Vargas Moniz)
Experimental Gravitation (Claus Laemmerzahl)
Variation of Fundamental Constants (Victor Flambaum, Julian Berengut)
Compact Binaries and Strong-Field Tests of Gravity (Michael Kramer)
Photospheric Emission in GRBs (Gregory Vereshchagin, J Michael Burgess)
The energy compositions and acceleration processes of GRB jets (Shiho Kobayashi, Stefano Covino)
Exact Solutions in Four and Higher Dimensions: Mathematical Aspects (Georgy Alekseev)
Cosmological Singularities and Asymptotics (Spiros Cotsakis)
Theoretical Issues in GR (Dieter Brill)
Exact Solutions (Physical Aspects) (Susan Scott)
Quantum Fields (Vladimir Belinski)
Sources of Gravitational Waves (Andrew Melatos)
Status of the Gravitational Wave Detectors (Jean-Yves Vinet)
History of Relativity and Cosmology (Christian Bracco)
Observational Gravitational Lensing [Microlensing] (Philippe Jetzer)
Cosmology from GRBs (Lorenzo Amati)
Loop Quantum Gravity, Quantum Geometry, Spin Foams (Jerzy Lewandowski)
Quantum Gravity Phenomenology (Giovanni Amelino-Camelia)
Loop quantum gravity: cosmology and black holes (Jorge Pullin, Parampreet Singh)
Nuclear Physics and Astrophysics (Jorge Rueda, Rodrigo Negreiros)
Strong (EM) Field Physics and Astrophysics (Sang Pyo Kim, She-Sheng Xue)
Ground experiments and astrophysical observations in Strong Field Physics (Sang Pyo Kim, She-Sheng Xue)
Strong Fields and High Energy Astrophysical events (Yu-Qing Lou)
Supernova Explosions and Neutron Stars Dynamics (Kostas Kokkotas)
Accretion Processes onto Black Holes: Observation and Modeling (Sandip Chakrabarti)
Future prospects in high energy astrophysics (Filippo Frontera, Aldo Morselli)
New States of Matter and Strong Electromagnetico Fields in the Universe (Cesar Zen)
QCD phase diagram: from nuclear astrophysics to heavy ion collisons (Debora Peres Menezes)
Stellar Black Holes (Microquasars) (Felix Mirabel)
Experimental tests of fundamental physics with high energy gamma rays (Alessandro De Angelis)
Tests of gravity with atom interferometers and clocks (Gugliemo Tino)
Numerical simulations, SN, and GRB, connecting with massive SN (Valeri Chechetkin, Alexey Aksenov, Pascal Chardonnet)
Theory of light propagation in gravitation fields (lensing, shadows, etc.) (Volker Perlick)
Hairy Black Holes (Jutta Kunz)
Scalar fields in cosmology (Alfredo Macias)
Quantum Spacetime(chair Gherardo Piacitelli, general 40 minute talk by Sergio Doplicher)
Statistics and Geometry of Weak Lensing Data  (Domenico Marinucci)
Future Experiments and Missions in X and Gamma Ray (Shuang-Nan Zhang, Oscar Adriani)
Branes and Instantons in String Theory (Alberto Lerda)
Black Holes in String Theory (Gianguido Dall’Agata)
Gauge/gravity and related correspondences (Rubik Poghossian)
String Pheno and Cosmo (Gianfranco Pradisi)
The Status of Magnetic White Dwarfs (Enrique Garcia-Berro)
Geometric approaches to the thermodynamics of black holes (Hernando Quevedo)
Double Neutron Stars and Neutron Star-White Dwarf Binaries (Thomas Tauris)
Interacting Dark Matter (Nikolaos Mavromatos)

A preliminary list of chairpersons and parallel sessions can be seen at: <>

The complete and detailed list will be published on the site: <>

New CQG focus issue on Entanglement and Quantum Gravity edited by Eugenio Bianchi and Carlo Rovelli

Dear Colleagues,

It is my pleasure to present this focus issue on Entanglement and Quantum Gravity, guest edited by Eugenio Bianchi and Carlo Rovelli:

Recent years have seen a flourishing of interest in the role that entanglement entropy plays in the physics of spacetime. Insights have been obtained into the role of entanglement for the entropy for black hole thermodynamics, and new ideas have been explored connecting entanglement to holography, wormholes, to the structure itself of semiclassical spacetime and others. This special issue collects a number of articles on this topic, offering a partial overview of these new developments.

The full issue is available from IOPscience for free for the next 3 months. I hope you enjoy reading the collection.

Kind regards,

Ben Sheard
Publishing Editor
Classical and Quantum Gravity
IOP Publishing

New books: Two Volumes from the Prague conference “Relativity and Gravitation—100 years after Einstein in Prague”

”Relativity and Gravitation–100 years after Einstein in Prague”, was the name of the conference held in Prague on June 25-29, 2012, inspired by the title, date, and significance of the last of Einstein’s Prague papers. The aim of the conference was to review the present status of the general theory of relativity (both classical and quantum) and its applications in cosmology and astrophysics from a broad perspective. The second aim was to present the newest results in each of these fields.

The first volume “General Relativity, Cosmology and Astrophysics–Perspectives 100 years after Einstein’s stay in Prague” (J. Bicak and T. Ledvinka eds.) is included in the Springer series Fundamental Theories of Physics, No. 177.

The articles included in this Volume represent a broad and highly qualified view on the present state of general relativity, quantum gravity, and their cosmological and astrophysical implications. As such, it may serve as a valuable source of knowledge and inspiration for experts in these fields, as well as an advanced source of information for young researchers. The contents are divided into four broad parts: (i) Gravity and Prague, (ii) Classical General Relativity, (iii) Cosmology and Quantum Gravity, and (iv) Numerical Relativity and Relativistic Astrophysics. Approaching soon the centenary of Einstein’s famous theory, this volume offers a precious overview of the path done by the scientific community in this field in the last century, defining the challenges of the next 100 years.

The second volume “Relativity and Gravitation–100 Years After Einstein in Prague”, (J. Bicak and T. Ledvinka eds.) is included in the Springer Proceedings in Physics, No. 157.

This volume includes abstracts of the plenary talks (contained in the first volume) and 82 full texts of contributed talks and articles based on the posters presented at the conference. These describe primarily original results of the authors from 31 countries. The contents are divided into three broad parts: (i) Classical General Relativity, (ii) Cosmology and Relativistic Astrophysics, and (iii) Quantum Fields and Quantum Gravity.

The tables of contents, some sample pages and further information can be obtained from the following links:

Major new reference work: Springer Handbook of Spacetime

Edited by Abhay Ashtekar and Vesselin Petkov, the long-awaited Springer Handbook of Spacetime is now available, also as an eBook. It is dedicated to the ground-breaking paradigm shifts embodied in the two relativity theories, and describes in detail the profound reshaping of physical sciences they ushered in. In a single volume it includes chapters on foundations, on the underlying mathematics, on physical and astrophysical implications, experimental evidence and cosmological predictions, as well as discussing efforts to unify general relativity and quantum physics. The Handbook can be used as a desk reference by researchers in a wide variety of fields, not only by specialists in relativity but also by researchers in related areas that either grew out of, or are deeply influenced by, the two relativity theories: cosmology, astronomy and astrophysics, high energy physics, quantum field theory, mathematics, and philosophy of science. It should also serve as a valuable resource for graduate students and young researchers entering these areas, and for instructors who teach courses on these subjects.
The Handbook is divided into six parts: Part A: Introduction to Spacetime Structure. Part B: Foundational Issues. Part C: Spacetime Structure and Mathematics. Part D: Confronting Relativity theories with observations. Part E: General relativity and the universe. Part F: Spacetime beyond Einstein.

Living Reviews in Relativity: “Massive Gravity” / “Time-Delay Interferometry”

Living Reviews in Relativity recently published two new articles: a major update of the review on “Time-Delay Interferometry” by Massimo Tinto and Sanjeev V. Dhurandhar and a new article on “Massive Gravity” by Claudia de Rham.

Please find the abstracts and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-7
de Rham, Claudia
“Massive Gravity”

ACCEPTED: 2014-07-18
PUBLISHED: 2014-08-25


We review recent progress in massive gravity. We start by showing how different theories of massive gravity emerge from a higher-dimensional theory of general relativity, leading to the Dvali-Gabadadze-Porrati model (DGP), cascading gravity and ghost-free massive gravity. We then explore their theoretical and phenomenological consistency, proving the absence of Boulware-Deser ghosts and reviewing the Vainshtein mechanism and the cosmological solutions in these models. Finally, we present alternative and related models of massive gravity such as new massive gravity, Lorentz-violating massive gravity and non-local massive gravity.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-6
Tinto, Massimo and Dhurandhar, Sanjeev V.
“Time-Delay Interferometry”

ACCEPTED: 2014-07-28
PUBLISHED: 2014-08-05


Equal-arm detectors of gravitational radiation allow phase measurements many orders of magnitude below the intrinsic phase stability of the laser injecting light into their arms. This is because the noise in the laser light is common to both arms, experiencing exactly the same delay, and thus cancels when it is differenced at the photo detector. In this situation, much lower level secondary noises then set the overall performance. If, however, the two arms have different lengths (as will necessarily be the case with space-borne interferometers), the laser noise experiences different delays in the two arms and will hence not directly cancel at the detector. In order to solve this problem, a technique involving heterodyne interferometry with unequal arm lengths and independent phase-difference readouts has been proposed. It relies on properly time-shifting and linearly combining independent Doppler measurements, and for this reason it has been called time-delay interferometry (TDI). This article provides an overview of the theory, mathematical foundations, and experimental aspects associated with the implementation of TDI. Although emphasis on the application of TDI to the Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA) mission appears throughout this article, TDI can be incorporated into the design of any future space-based mission aiming to search for gravitational waves via interferometric measurements. We have purposely left out all theoretical aspects that data analysts will need to account for when analyzing the TDI data combinations.


Living Reviews in Relativity: “On the History of Unified Field Theories. Part II”

Living Reviews in Relativity has published a new review article on “On the History of Unified Field Theories. Part II (ca. 1930 – ca. 1965)” by Hubert F. M. Goenner on 23 June 2014.

Please find the abstract and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-5
Goenner, Hubert F. M.
“On the History of Unified Field Theories. Part II (ca. 1930 – ca. 1965)”

ACCEPTED: 2014-05-13
PUBLISHED: 2014-06-23


The present review intends to provide an overall picture of the research concerning classical unified field theory, worldwide, in the decades between the mid-1930 and mid-1960. Main themes are the conceptual and methodical development of the field, the interaction among the scientists working in it, their opinions and interpretations. Next to the most prominent players, A. Einstein and E. Schrodinger, V. Hlavaty and the French groups around A. Lichnerowicz, M.-A. Tonnelat, and Y. Thiry are presented. It is shown that they have given contributions of comparable importance. The review also includes a few sections on the fringes of the central topic like Born-Infeld electromagnetic theory or scalar-tensor theory. Some comments on the structure and organization of research-groups are also made.


Living Reviews in Relativity: “The Confrontation between General Relativity and Experiment”

Living Reviews in Relativity has published an update of the review “The Confrontation between General Relativity and Experiment” by Clifford M. Will on 11 June 2014.

Please find the abstract and further details below.

This new edition of one of our most read reviews also marks a new milestone the journal’s history: as of this day, Living Reviews has published 130 articles on 90 topics!

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-4
Will, Clifford M.
“The Confrontation between General Relativity and Experiment”

ACCEPTED: 2014-06-06
PUBLISHED: 2014-06-11


The status of experimental tests of general relativity and of theoretical frameworks for analyzing them are reviewed and updated. Einstein’s equivalence principle (EEP) is well supported by experiments such as the Eötvös experiment, tests of local Lorentz invariance and clock experiments. Ongoing tests of EEP and of the inverse square law are searching for new interactions arising from unification or quantum gravity. Tests of general relativity at the post-Newtonian level have reached high precision, including the light deflection, the Shapiro time delay, the perihelion advance of Mercury, the Nordtvedt effect in lunar motion, and frame-dragging. Gravitational wave damping has been detected in an amount that agrees with general relativity to better than half a percent using the Hulse-Taylor binary pulsar, and a growing family of other binary pulsar systems is yielding new tests, especially of strong-field effects. Current and future tests of relativity will center on strong gravity and gravitational waves.

Major revision, updated and expanded. Added new Section 2.3.3 on the Pioneer anomaly; split former Section 3 into new 3 and 4, and extended Section 3.3 on competing theories of gravity; added new Sections 5.3 and 5.4 on compact binary systems; added a new Section 8 on astrophysical and cosmological tests. The number of references increased from 299 to 454. Added two figures (8, 9) and updated Figures 1, 3, 5, and 7.


Living Reviews in Relativity: “The Evolution of Compact Binary Star Systems”

Living Reviews in Relativity has published a major update of the review “The Evolution of Compact Binary Star Systems” by Konstantin A. Postnov and Lev R. Yungelson on 5 May 2014.

Please find the abstract and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-3
Postnov, Konstantin A. and Yungelson, Lev R.
“The Evolution of Compact Binary Star Systems”

ACCEPTED: 2014-03-17
PUBLISHED: 2014-05-05


We review the formation and evolution of compact binary stars consisting of white dwarfs (WDs), neutron stars (NSs), and black holes (BHs). Mergings of compact-star binaries are expected to be the most important sources for forthcoming gravitational-wave (GW) astronomy. In the first part of the review, we discuss observational manifestations of close binaries with NS and/or BH components and their merger rate, crucial points in the formation and evolution of compact stars in binary systems, including the treatment of the natal kicks, which NSs and BHs acquire during the core collapse of massive stars and the common envelope phase of binary evolution, which are most relevant to the merging rates of NS-NS, NS-BH and BH-BH binaries. The second part of the review is devoted mainly to the formation and evolution of binary WDs and their observational manifestations, including their role as progenitors of cosmologically-important thermonuclear SN Ia. We also consider AM CVn-stars, which are thought to be the best verification binary GW sources for future low-frequency GW space interferometers.


Living Reviews in Relativity: “Gravitational Radiation from…” / “The Hole Argument and…”

Living Reviews in Relativity recently published two new articles: a major update of the review on “Gravitational Radiation from Post-Newtonian Sources and Inspiralling Compact Binaries” by Luc Blanchet and a new article on “The Hole Argument and Some Physical and Philosophical Implications” by John Stachel.

Please find the abstracts and further details below.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-2
Blanchet, Luc
“Gravitational Radiation from Post-Newtonian Sources and Inspiralling Compact Binaries”

ACCEPTED: 2014-01-27
PUBLISHED: 2014-02-14


To be observed and analyzed by the network of gravitational wave detectors on ground (LIGO, VIRGO, etc.) and by the future detectors in space (eLISA, etc.), inspiralling compact binaries — binary star systems composed of neutron stars and/or black holes in their late stage of evolution — require high-accuracy templates predicted by general relativity theory. The gravitational waves emitted by these very relativistic systems can be accurately modelled using a high-order post-Newtonian gravitational wave generation formalism. In this article, we present the current state of the art on post-Newtonian methods as applied to the dynamics and gravitational radiation of general matter sources (including the radiation reaction back onto the source) and inspiralling compact binaries. We describe the post-Newtonian equations of motion of compact binaries and the associated Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formalisms, paying attention to the self-field regularizations at work in the calculations. Several notions of innermost circular orbits are discussed. We estimate the accuracy of the post-Newtonian approximation and make a comparison with numerical computations of the gravitational self-force for compact binaries in the small mass ratio limit. The gravitational waveform and energy flux are obtained to high post-Newtonian order and the binary’s orbital phase evolution is deduced from an energy balance argument. Some landmark results are given in the case of eccentric compact binaries — moving on quasi-elliptical orbits with non-negligible eccentricity. The spins of the two black holes play an important role in the definition of the gravitational wave templates. We investigate their imprint on the equations of motion and gravitational wave phasing up to high post-Newtonian order (restricting to spin-orbit effects which are linear in spins), and analyze the post-Newtonian spin precession equations as well as the induced precession of the orbital plane.

PUB.NO. lrr-2014-1
Stachel, John
“The Hole Argument and Some Physical and Philosophical Implications”

ACCEPTED: 2013-11-17
PUBLISHED: 2014-02-06


This is a historical-critical study of the hole argument, concentrating on the interface between historical, philosophical and physical issues. Although it includes a review of its history, its primary aim is a discussion of the contemporary implications of the hole argument for physical theories based on dynamical, background-independent space-time structures.

The historical review includes Einstein’s formulations of the hole argument, Kretschmann’s critique, as well as Hilbert’s reformulation and Darmois’ formulation of the general-relativistic Cauchy problem. The 1970s saw a revival of interest in the hole argument, growing out of attempts to answer the question: Why did three years elapse between Einstein’s adoption of the metric tensor to represent the gravitational field and his adoption of the Einstein field equations?

The main part presents some modern mathematical versions of the hole argument, including both coordinate-dependent and coordinate-independent definitions of covariance and general covariance; and the fiber bundle formulation of both natural and gauge natural theories. By abstraction from continuity and differentiability, these formulations can be extended from differentiable manifolds to any set; and the concepts of permutability and general permutability applied to theories based on relations between the elements of a set, such as elementary particle theories.

We are closing with an overview of current discussions of philosophical and physical implications of the hole argument.