Roger Penrose

In the last twenty years, cosmology has unexpectedly emerged as one of the most exciting and dynamic fields of modern science. From astoundingly precise measurements of the cosmic microwave background to the ongoing mysteries of dark energy and dark matter, modern cosmology is unquestionably in the midst of its Golden Age. 

And yet, one of the most eminent mathematical physicists of our age, Roger Penrose is convinced that there is one fundamental problem that is consistently being overlooked: why did our universe begin in such a particular state of extremely low entropy? His Conformal Cyclic Cosmology (CCC) is an attempt to directly address that question.

The Cyclic Universe is based on an extensive conversation between Howard Burton and Roger Penrose, co-recipient of the 2020 Nobel Prize in Physics and Emeritus Rouse Ball Professor of Mathematics at the Mathematical Institute at the University of Oxford, and explores his motivation to come up with this theory in the first place and provides detailed insights into his groundbreaking research and Conformal Cyclic Cosmology.

This carefully-edited book includes an introduction, A Hidden Audience, and questions for discussion at the end of each chapter:

  1. Inadvertent Success – An inside look at a mysterious publishing phenomenon
  2. Considering Entropy – Minimum, maximum and both at the same time
  3. Mysteries and False Explanations – Dark issues and inflationary hyperbole 
  4. Conformal Geometry – Reinterpreting the end and the beginning
  5. CCC: The Basic Idea – Matching beginnings and ends, conformally 
  6. Light Cones – Photons vs. massive particles
  7. Massive Headaches – And how we might make them disappear
  8. Necessary Conditions – Dark energy, dark matter and information loss in black holes
  9. Cosmic Imprints? – Searching for evidence of past aeons
  10. Battling Onwards – Challenges of an irrepressibly independent thinker

The Cyclic Universe is now available in electronic format on:

The Cyclic Universe is also available as part of the 5-part Ideas Roadshow Collection called Conversations About Astrophysics & Cosmology in both print and electronic format.

Read more here


The two-part video of this conversation is available on Vimeo On Demand:
The Cyclic Universe, Part I and The Cyclic Universe, Part II.