Physical cosmology

New Results in Cosmology and the Coherence of the Standard Model

Blois, Loire Valley, France - June 15-20,2003

This site should be consulted for full details, registration forms etc.



The XVth Rencontres de Blois, entitled PHYSICAL COSMOLOGY will be held in the Château Royal de Blois, France, from Sunday, June 15th, to Friday, June 20th, 2003.

Postal address of the Conference:

Rencontres de Blois
Château de Blois
41000 BLOIS - France
The picturesque old French town of Blois, famous for its XIV-XVIIth century château, is about 170 km (100 miles) from Paris in the beautiful region of the Châteaux de la Loire.

The Rencontres de Blois are international conferences, whose spirit is explicitly multidisciplinary. They have now been organized for a number of years in the city of Blois, in France, and have covered topics ranging from particle physics to chaos theory, life and planetary science. They are a mix of invited and contributed papers; posters are also very welcome. Young researchers are particularly encouraged to attend.

PHYSICAL COSMOLOGY is the fifteenth of a series of Rencontres. The most recent ones have been Frontiers of Matter, held in the summer of 1999, Frontiers of Life, held in the summer of 2000, Frontiers of the Universe, held in the summer of 2001 and Matter-Antimatter Asymmetry, held in the summer of 2002.

The conference will take place in the Château de Blois itself, an ancient Royal residence situated in one of the most charming regions of France; lunch and dinner are served in the castle to all participants; the conference format is designed to encourage discussion and cross-fertilization of ideas. Participants are expected to stay for the whole week.


During the last decade, a coherent cosmological model has emerged that is currently being subjected to severe, precision observational tests. The year 2003 in particular will see the publication of the first results from the Wilkinson Microwave Anistropy Probe (WMAP) and a data release by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). Capitalizing on this exciting situation, the Blois Cosmology meeting of 2003 aims to provide a comprehensive review of the field and an opportunity to discuss at length the status of present and future research efforts.

Emphasis will be on topical reviews and on presentation of the latest results.

In addition there will be a small number of parallel sessions. The range of topics includes: the cosmological parameters, the early universe, dark energy, dark matter, CMB physics and results, structure formation and cosmic shear, and galaxy formation.


1. International Advisory Committee

T. Damour (France), J. Frieman (USA), O. Lahav (UK), L. Page (USA), J.L. Puget (France), M. Rees (UK), M. Sazhin (Russia), J. Silk (UK), G. Smoot (USA), N. Vittorio (Italy) .

2. International Program Committee

  Réza Ansari (Orsay), James Bartlett (Paris), Ludwik Celnikier (Meudon), Sergio Colafrancesco (Roma), Stéphane Colombi (Paris), Bernard Degrange (Palaiseau), Jacques Dumarchez (Paris), Yannick Giraud-Héraud (Paris), Marc Kamionkowski (Pasadena), David Langlois (Paris), Christophe Magneville (Saclay), Bruce Partridge (Haverford), Marie Treyer (Marseille), Jean Trân Thanh Vân (Orsay) - Chairperson.

3. Sponsors

  Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique (CEA), Ministère de la Recherche (MENRT), National Science Foundation (NSF), Conseil Régional de la Région Centre, Ville de Blois

4. Scientific Program

The program of the Blois 2003 conference "PHYSICAL COSMOLOGY" is presently under construction.
Below is a first draft of the main subjects that will be covered during the week.

Details of the scientific program will be made available on the conference web pages as they become available.

Participants wishing to present their work orally in a parallel session should refer to the conference web site, where they will find an electronic abstract submission form. Please use this form so that we can program the parallel sessions efficiently, since the time available for parallel sessions is very limited; you should indicate the expected duration (maximum : 15 min plus 5 min discussion) of your contribution, but please be aware that you may be required to shorten it.

Participants wishing to make a poster contribution should also fill in the electronic abstract submission form.



1.Welcome and Registration

Participants are expected to arrive on Sunday afternoon, June 15th. Registration at the conference office in the Château de Blois will start at 15:00 on Sunday, June 15th. A welcome cocktail will be offered to the participants and their families at 19:00. It will be followed by a dinner.

2.Conference schedule

The conference will start on Monday June 16th at 9:00 and will end on Friday June 20th. at 17:00

The conference room will be located at the Château Royal de Blois.

3. Conference facilities

The following equipment will be available: a slide projector for 5cm x 5cm slides, an overhead projector for transparencies and a a beamer for video-presentations (but participants are expected to use their own laptops).

4. Copies of transparencies

In order to make transparencies of the conference available on the web, speakers who have their talks in file format (Powerpoint, PDF, Postscript, HTML...) are invited to send them by email to :


Speakers are requested to bring a good photocopy of the transparencies of their talk. This copy will be kept for display and used for preparing the summary talk.

5. Proceedings

The proceedings will be edited and published. Participants will receive a copy of the proceedings at no extra charge.

Deadline for submitting the manuscript: October 1st, 2003.

6. Registration Fee

The registration fee is 315 Euros for the participants. Accompanying members will be charged 150 euros to cover the conference "banquet", the visits of the Châteaux and the excursions.

Payment of the registration fee can be made:

Please note that we are unable to accept credit card for registration payment.

7. Accommodation

Hotel accommodation will be available in 3 categories: one star (*), two stars (**) and three stars (***), all rooms having either a shower or a bath.

Please fill in the registration form and send it either online or by email to

or fax it to: 33 (0)1 69 28 86 59

Room reservations can only be guaranteed if your registration form has reached the Conference secretariat by May 15, 2003. We apologize in advance if it is not possible to reserve the hotel category corresponding to your request. We will acknowledge receipt of your reservation and the hotel category obtained for you.

Please note that hotel reservations at this reduced cost are made for the whole conference: from Sunday afternoon, June 15th, till the morning of the Friday, June 20th (lunch included). The total cost cannot be reduced in case of partial attendance.

In order to simplify matters and to save you the bother of sending the 100 euros deposit normally required to guarantee hotel reservation, the conference will do this for you. However, in exchange, we ask you to agree to reimburse the conference for the deposit we will have paid, should you cancel your reservation after May 15, since after this date the hotel will keep the deposit.

Cancellations of hotel reservations can be made freely only up May 15th, 2003. After this date, the hotel will require full payment.

* * * * * *

Hotel Mercure
28 quai Saint Jean - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 56 66 66
fax : 02 54 56 67 00

Le Savoie
6 rue Ducoux - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 74 32 21
fax : 02 54 74 29 58

A la Ville de Tours
2 place de la Grève - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 78 07 86
fax : 02 54 56 67 00


Relais de l'Octroi
14 avenue Gambetta - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 45 11 11
fax : 02 54 45 31 10

Etap Hotel
4 rue Jean Moulin - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 78 24 14
fax : 02 54 78 83 88


avenue de Vendôme - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 74 02 67
fax : 02 54 74 80 47


La Renaissance
1 rue de la Garenne - 41000 Blois
tél : 02 54 78 02 63
fax : 02 54 74 30 95


Hôtel Anne De Bretagne
31 av Doct Jean Laigret 41000 BLOIS
tél: 02 54 78 05 38
fax : 02 54 74 37 79


More informations about Blois : Tourism Office www.loiredeschateaux.com


8. Meals :

In order to enhance the interactions and exchanges between participants, all participants are requested to have lunch and dinner together. The conference has asked a caterer to serve lunch and dinner in the Château Royal de Blois. The package cost for 5 days is 200 Euros and will be paid to the caterer on the conference site by cash or check; it cannot be reduced for partial attendance. The conference banquet will take place on Thursday, June 19.

9. Social program :

Several social activities are planned during the conference for participants, their families and guests:
Visits of the Châteaux of Blois and Chenonceau
Visit of the "Clos Lucé" museum
"Son et Lumière" show at the Château de Blois
An additional program for the accompanying persons (cost not included) will be organized in collaboration with the tourist office of Blois.

10. Travel :

The most convenient way to reach Blois is to arrive in Paris and take a train (SNCF) from Austerlitz railway station to Blois. The following train schedule is still preliminary. Please check with your travel agency or by consulting http://www.voyages-sncf.com.

Train Schedule preliminary

Sunday, June 15, 2003

Friday, June 20, 2003

Departure from

Arrival in

from Blois

Arrival in

10 h 47

12 h 45



13 h 41

15 h 39

17 h 29

18 h 59

17 h 00

19 h 04

19 h 16

20 h 58

A bus shuttle will be organized at the arrival of some trains to Blois to reach your hotel.
Sunday, June 15th 2003
Departure from Blois on Friday, June 20th 2003

Blois can easily be reached by car. Take the exit "Blois" on the Motorway ("autoroute'') A10 connecting Paris to the Châteaux de la Loire area (about 2 hours drive). Follow the signs "Centre ville".


Please refer to our web site for further information and all forms.
If you are unable to access or use our web based forms please inform the conference secretary by email and the forms will be sent to you