PITP is supporting a broad range of research in the general areas of
cosmology, gravity and theoretical astrophysics. In theoretical
cosmology, topics include analysis and modeling of the cosmic background
radiation with intimate ties to ongoing experimental efforts, structure
formation in the early universe as well as issues-such as
inflation-involving the physics of the very early universe.

General relativity has traditionally been a strength of Canadian theory;
PITP researchers include many of the most active Canadian and
international researchers in this field. One key area involves problems
in numerical relativity, such as black hole formation, black hole
collisions, gravitational wave generation and the study of string
theory-inspired phenomena. Numerical relativity depends to a large
extent on skilled young researchers, a significant number of whom have
been, or are being, trained by scientists associated with the institute.
With Penn State University, PITP has already co-sponsored a summer
school in this area in Vancouver (see Summer
Schools). Another area of
interest is in quantum black holes. At the present time interest in this
field concentrates on the relationship to results provided in string
theory, and there is significant overlap with the string theory CRT
here.

Another focus of activity in the gravity CRT is the study of the early
universe, particularly the nature of dark matter and gas in the early
universe, and the relationship to measurements of the cosmic microwave
background. PITP will foster close collaboration between the CITA and
UBC groups and to this end is jointly sponsoring with CITA the 2003
Kingston Theoretical Astrophysics Meeting, "The Microwave Sky Confronts
the Universe!". This conference has been organised to run concurrently
with a PITP string CRT meeting, with joint sessions. Other areas of
related interest include quantum cosmology and, increasingly, issues
such as the dynamical fate of black strings which are motivated by
string theory.