David L Wiltshire

I am a Professor of Theoretical Physics.
Phone: (+64 3) 3695128

Email: David.Wiltshire AT canterbury.ac.nz

My research interests are in general relativity, cosmology and quantum gravity. I have served on the committee of the International Society on General Relativity and Gravitation 2017-2022, and am a past President of the Australasian Society for General Relativity and Gravitation and a past President of the New Zealand Institute of Physics. I served 8 years on the editorial board of Classical and Quantum Gravity, 2012-2019.

Amongst the permanent faculty at Canterbury my research interests most closely intersect with those of Chris Stevens in Mathematics, and also with Jenni Adams and Chris Gordon here in Physics.

My research is currently focused on understanding gravitational energy in an inhomogeneous universe: it is my thesis that is the key to understanding the mystery of "dark energy". I have a viable alternative to the standard cosmology, without dark energy, which I have named the timescape cosmology. I am Principal Investigator on a recently awarded Marsden grant: Changing the face of the Universe: Cosmological simulations from first principles in general relativity. I have supervised 9 completed PhDs. I am currently supervising 1 MSc student, Manon van Zyl, and 5 PhD students: Michael Williams, Chris Harvey-Hawes, Morag Hills, Marco Galoppo and Zac Lane. (Zac is co-supervised with Ryan Ridden-Harper.) A new postdoc will join us in November 2024. Past postdocs in our group were Teppo Mattsson and Ishwaree Neupane. Emeritus Professor Roy Kerr participates in our group meetings. We have on-going collaborations with Thomas Buchert's group at the Université de Lyon 1, Hayley Macpherson at the University of Chicago, Asta Heinesen at the University of Copenhagen, Krzysztof Bolejko at the University of Tasmania and Jan Ostrowski at the National Centre for Nuclear Research, Warsaw.

Note for prospective PhD students

Recent general interest pieces:

Gravitational energy as dark energy

Selected papers:
Quantifying the accuracy of the Alcock-Paczyński scaling of baryon acoustic oscillation measurements,
JCAP 01 (2020) 038;
Baryon acoustic oscillation methods for generic curvature. Application to the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey: JCAP 03 (2019) 003;
Comment on "Hubble flow variations as a test for inhomogeneous cosmology", Astron. Astrophys. 624 (2019) A12;
Lagrangian theory of structure formation in relativistic cosmology. V. Irrotational fluids: Phys. Rev. D 98 (2018) 043507;
Apparent cosmic acceleration from type Ia supernovae: Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc. 472 (2017) 835-851;
What is general relativity?: Phys. Scripta 92 (2017) 053001

Cosmic Clocks, Cosmic Variance and Cosmic Averages, New J. Phys. 9 (2007) 377, Focus on Dark Energy

The Kerr Spacetime: Rotating Black Holes in General Relativity
(Cambridge University Press, 2009)

Kerr Fest - In August, 2004, I organised a Symposium on black holes in astrophysics, general relativity and quantum gravity, in celebration of Professor Roy Kerr's 70th birthday. Five years later, in December 2009, I organised ACGRG5.