This book discusses many of the recent theoretical and observational developments that have significant implications for astronomy and astrophysics. The main themes are (i) cosmology, (ii) gravitational wave astronomy and gravitational physics, (iii) stellar astrophysics, and (iv) active galactic nuclei and disk accretion. There are also contributions on the solar system.
Cosmology: new cosmological data and the "best-fit" universe, O. Lahav; measuring the universe with the cosmic microwave background, D. Barbosa and M. Chu; initial conditions for hybrid inflation, L.E. Mendes and A.R. Liddle; the density parameter in scalar field cosmologies, J.P. Mimoso and A. Nunes. Relativistic astrophysics: matter trapped gravitational waves, L. Bento and J.P.S. Lemos; pair creation of particles and black holes in external fields, O.J.C. Dias; defining a test particle's velocity at the Schwarzschild horizon, P. Crawford and I. Tereno. Stellar and gallactic astrophysics: searching the whole sky for variability, B. Paczynski; T Tauri stars - near infrared spectroscopy, D.F.M. Folha; large scale structure and cosmic rays revisited, R. Ugoccioni et al; the contribution of stellar light in BL Lac type objects, P. Mendes and M. Roos-Serote. Planetary astrophysics: Galileo/near infrared mapping spectrometer data from Jupiter - where is the water vapour?, M. Roos-Serote et al; photometry of centaurs 1997 CU26 and 1999 UG5, N. Peixinho et al. Public lectures: gamma ray bursts - the most energetic machines in the universe, B. Paczynski; the physics of the little bang, J.D. de Deus; and other papers.