Gravitational lensing has changed in the past two decades from an interesting curiosity into a useful astrophysical tool. In fact, it has a lot of important applications, ranging from studies in the solar system, to galactic structure, to probing cosmological objects. Some of the practical consequences in lensing have been known for a long time and have been predicted early on, whereas other applications popped up only recently. In fact, gravitational lensing is one of the few branches in astronomy/astrophysics, which is conceptually simple enough that one can use it to make quantitative predictions. This feature of being able to calculate or prove a result and then go out and confirm/detect it observationally — generally hailed as one of the principles of good science — has produced some particularly nice examples in lensing, with the Einstein light deflection at the solar limb being the most famous one.
KeywordsDark Matter Cosmological Constant Cosmological Model Light Curve Cosmic String
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