It is generally felt in the cosmology and particle astrophysics community that we have just entered an era which later can only be looked back upon as a golden age. Thanks to the rapid technical development, with powerful new telescopes and other detectors taken into operation at an impressive rate, and the accompanying advancement of theoretical ideas, the picture of the past, present and future Universe is getting ever clearer. Some of the most exciting new findings and expected future developments are discussed in this invaluable volume.The topics covered include the physics of the early Universe and ultra-high energy processes. Emphasis is also put on neutrino physics and astrophysics, with the evidence for non-zero neutrino masses emerging from both solar neutrinos and atmospheric neutrinos covered in great depth. Another field with interesting new results concerns the basic cosmological parameters, where both traditional methods and the potential of new ones, like deep supernova surveys and acoustic peak detections in the cosmic microwave background, are thoroughly discussed. Various aspects of the dark matter problem, such as gravitational lensing estimates of galaxy masses, cluster evolution and hot cluster electron distortions of the thermal microwave background spectrum, are also discussed, as are particle physics candidates of dark matter and methods to detect them. Cosmic rays of matter and antimatter are included as a topic, and so is the problem of the enigmatic dark energy of the vacuum.

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