ASTR - Astronomy and Astrophysics

ASTR 1 Introduction to the Cosmos

Overview of the main ideas in our current view of the universe and how these ideas originated. Galaxies, quasars, stars, black holes, and planets. Students cannot receive credit for this course and course 2.

Credits

5

Instructor

Puragra Guha Thakurta

General Education Code

SI

Quarter offered

Fall

ASTR 2 Overview of the Universe

An overview of the main ideas in our current view of the universe, and how they originated. Galaxies, quasars, stars, pulsars, and planets. Intended primarily for nonscience majors interested in a one-quarter survey of classical and modern astronomy.

Credits

5

Instructor

A. Leauthaud, M. Bolte

General Education Code

MF

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter

ASTR 3 Introductory Astronomy: Planetary Systems

Properties of the solar system and other planetary systems. Topics include the Sun, solar system exploration, the physical nature of the Earth and the other planets, comets and asteroids, the origin of the solar system, the possibility of life on other worlds, planet formation, and the discovery and characterization of planets beyond the solar system. Intended for nonscience majors. Courses 3, 4, and 5 are independent and may be taken separately or sequentially. (Formerly Introductory Astronomy: The Solar System.)

Credits

5

Instructor

J. Fortney

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 4 Introductory Astronomy: The Stars

Stellar evolution: observed properties of stars, internal structure of stars, stages of a star's life including stellar births, white dwarfs, supernovae, pulsars, neutron stars, and black holes. Planet and constellation identification. Intended for nonscience majors. Courses 3, 4, and 5 are independent and may be taken separately or sequentially.

Credits

5

Instructor

Constance Rockosi

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 5 Introductory Astronomy: The Formation and Evolution of the Universe

The universe explained. Fundamental concepts of modern cosmology (Big Bang, dark matter, curved space, black holes, star and galaxy formation), the basic physics underlying them, and their scientific development. Intended for non-science majors. Courses 3, 4, and 5 are independent and may be taken separately.

Credits

5

Instructor

Michael Bolte, Jean Brodie, Brant Robertson

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 6 The Space-Age Solar System

Scientific study of the Moon, Earth, Mercury, Venus, and Mars by the space program; history of rocket development; the Apollo program and exploration of the Moon; unmanned spacecraft studies of the terrestrial planets; scientific theories of planetary surfaces and atmospheres. Intended for nonscience majors. (Formerly course 80A.)

Credits

5

Instructor

Graeme Smith

General Education Code

SI

Quarter offered

Winter

ASTR 7 Black Holes

Examines the nature of black holes, including their creation and evolution; evidence for their existence from astronomical observations; and the role of black holes in the evolution of the universe. Also examines current ideas about the nature of space, time, and gravity.

Credits

5

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 8 Exploring the Universe with Astronomical Data

Introduces how we use observational data to learn about stars, galaxies, planets, and cosmology. Covers astronomical data and experimental design and basic physics and statistical techniques, such as model fitting, regression, significance tests, and error estimation.

Credits

5

Instructor

Constance Rockosi

General Education Code

SR

Quarter offered

Fall

ASTR 9A Introduction to Research in Physics and Astrophysics

Introduction to research for first-year students interested in physics and astrophysics. Students complete projects in small groups with scientists. Introduces techniques for collaboration; science writing; physics careers. Continuing course spanning two quarters. Enrollment is restricted to first-year proposed astrophysics and physics majors and by permission of the instructor.

Credits

2

Cross Listed Courses

PHYS 9A

Instructor

R. Murray-Clay, J. Fortney

ASTR 9B Introduction to Research in Physics and Astrophysics

Introduction to research for first-year students interested in physics and astrophysics. Students complete projects in small groups with scientists. Introduces techniques for collaboration; science writing; physics careers. Continuing course spanning two quarters. Prerequisite(s): course 9A. Enrollment is restricted to first-year proposed applied physics, physics, and physics (astrophysics) majors and by permission of the instructor.

Credits

3

Cross Listed Courses

PHYS 9B

General Education Code

PR-E

ASTR 12 Stars and Stellar Evolution

An introduction to the observational facts and physical theory pertaining to stars. Topics include the observed properties of stars and the physics underlying those properties; stellar atmospheres; stellar structure and evolution. Intended for science majors and qualified non-science majors. Knowledge of high school physics and an understanding of mathematics at the Mathematics 2 level required.

Credits

5

Instructor

Ryan Foley

General Education Code

MF

Quarter offered

Spring

ASTR 13 Galaxies, Cosmology, and High Energy Astrophysics

Introduction to modern cosmology and extragalactic astronomy. Topics include the origin of the universe, Big Bang cosmology, expansion of the universe, dark matter and dark energy, properties of galaxies and active galactic nuclei, and very energetic phenomena in our own and other galaxies. Intended for science majors and qualified non-science majors. Knowledge of high school physics and an understanding of mathematics at the Math 2 level required.

Credits

5

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 15 Dead Stars and Black Holes

Course is primarily concerned with the structure, formation, and astrophysical manifestations of compact objects, such as white dwarfs, neutron stars, and black holes, and the astronomical evidence for their existence. Intended for science majors and qualified non-science majors. Knowledge of high school physics and an understanding of mathematics at the Math 2 level required.

Credits

5

Instructor

Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 16 Astrobiology: Life in the Universe

Topics include the detection of extrasolar planets, planet formation, stellar evolution and properties of Mars, the exploration of our solar system and the search for life within it, and the evolution of life on Earth. Intended for science majors and qualified non-science majors. Knowledge of high school physics and an understanding of mathematics at the Math 2 level required.

Credits

5

Instructor

N. Batalha

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 18 Planets and Planetary Systems

Our solar system and newly discovered planetary systems. Formation and structure of planets, moons, rings, asteroids, comets. Intended for science majors and qualified non-science majors. Knowledge of high school physics and an understanding of mathematics at the Mathematics 2 level required.

Credits

5

General Education Code

MF

ASTR 111 Order-of-Magnitude Astrophysics

Examines the most basic and direct connection between physics and astrophysics in order to derive a better understanding of astrophysical phenomena from first principles to the extent possible.

Credits

5

Instructor

Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 22 or MATH 23A; PHYS 5B or PHYS 6B; and PHYS 101A or previous or concurrent enrollment in PHYS 102.

Quarter offered

Fall

ASTR 112 Physics of Stars

The leading observational facts about stars as interpreted by current theories of stellar structure and evolution. Spectroscopy, abundances of the elements, nucleosynthesis, stellar atmospheres, stellar populations. Final stages of evolution, including white dwarfs, neutron stars, supernovae.

Credits

5

Instructor

Ryan Foley, Jonathan Fortney

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 22 or MATH 23A, PHYS 5B or PHYS 6B, and PHYS 101A or PHYS 102.

Quarter offered

Spring

ASTR 113 Introduction to Cosmology

Physical examination of our evolving universe: the Big Bang model; simple aspects of general relativity; particle physics in the early universe; production of various background radiations; production of elements; tests of geometry of the universe; dark energy and dark matter; and formation and evolution of galaxies and large-scale structure. (Formerly Physical Cosmology.)

Credits

5

Instructor

Piero Madau

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 22 or MATH 23A, PHYS 5B or PHYS 6B, and PHYS 101A or PHYS 102.

Quarter offered

Winter

ASTR 117 High Energy Astrophysics

Theory and practice of space and ground-based x-ray and gamma-ray astronomical detectors. High-energy emission processes, neutron stars, black holes. Observations of x-ray binaries, pulsars, magnetars, clusters, gamma-ray bursts, the x-ray background. High-energy cosmic rays. Neutrino and gravitational-wave astronomy.

Credits

5

Instructor

Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 22 or MATH 23A, PHYS 5B or PHYS 6B, and PHYS 101A or PHYS 102.

ASTR 118 Physics of Planetary Systems

Determination of the physical properties of the solar system, its individual planets, and extrasolar planetary systems through ground-based and space-based observations, laboratory measurements, and theory. Theories of the origin and evolution of planets and planetary systems.

Credits

5

Instructor

N. Batalha

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 22 or MATH 23A; and PHYS 5B or PHYS 6B.

ASTR 119 Introduction to Scientific Computing

Introduction to solving scientific problems using computers. A series of simple problems from Earth sciences, physics, and astronomy are solved using a user-friendly scientific programming language (Python/SciPy).

Credits

5

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): MATH 11A or MATH 19A or MATH 20A or AM 15A.

Quarter offered

Fall, Spring

ASTR 136 Advanced Astronomy Laboratory

Introduces the techniques of modern observational astrophysics at optical wavelengths through hands-on experiments and use of remote observatories. Students develop the skills and experience to pursue original research. Course is time-intensive and research-oriented. (Formerly Physics 136.)

Credits

5

Requirements

Prerequisite(s): EART 119 and PHYS 133. Enrollment is restricted to junior and senior astrophysics majors.

Quarter offered

Spring

ASTR 192 Dir Stu Teach

Dir Stu Teach

Credits

5

ASTR 199 Tutorial

Credits

5

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 202 Astrophysics I

Survey of radiative processes of astrophysical importance from radio waves to gamma rays. The interaction of radiation with matter: radiative transfer, emission, and absorption. Thermal and non-thermal processes, including bremsstrahlung, synchrotron radiation, and Compton scattering. Radiation in plasmas. (Formerly Relative Processes.)

Credits

5

Instructor

B. Robertson

ASTR 204 Astrophysics II

Explores how physical conditions in astrophysical objects can be diagnosed from their spectra. Discussion topics include how energy flows determine the thermal state of radiating objects and how the physics of radiative transfer can explain the emergent spectral characteristics of stars, accretion disks, Lyman-alpha clouds, and microwave background. (Formerly Astrophysical Flows.)

Credits

5

Instructor

R. Murray-Clay

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 205 Introduction to Astronomical Research and Teaching

Lectures and seminar-style course intended to integrate new graduate students into the department; to introduce students to the research and interests of department faculty; and to expose graduate students to teaching skills and classroom techniques. (Formerly Introduction to Astronomical Research.)

Credits

5

Instructor

Graeme Smith

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

Quarter offered

Fall

ASTR 214 Special Topics in Galactic and Extragalactic Astronomy

Survey of some principal areas of research on the origin and growth of cosmic structures and galaxies: the dark ages; 21cm tomography; first galaxies; first stars and seed black holes; reionization and chemical enrichment of the intergalactic medium; the assembly of massive galaxies; quasi-stellar sources; interactions of massive black holes with their environment; extragalactic background radiation; numerical simulations and the nature of the dark matter; the dark halo of the Milky Way. (Formerly Special Topics in Cosmology)

Credits

5

Instructor

A. Leauthaud

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 220A Stars and Planets I

Survey of stellar structure and evolution.Physical properties of stellar material. Convective and radiative energy transport. Stellar models and evolutionary tracks through all phases. Brown dwarfs and giant planets. Comparison with observations. (Formerly Stellar Structure and Evolution.)

Credits

5

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 222 Stars and Planets II

Theory and observations of protoplanetary disks. Origin and evolution of the solar nebula. Formation and evolution of the terrestrial planets and the giant planets. (Formerly Planetary Formation and Evolution.)

Credits

5

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 225 High-Energy Astrophysics

High-energy astrophysics and the final stages of stellar evolution: supernovae, binary stars, accretion disks, pulsars; extragalactic radio sources; active galactic nuclei; black holes. (Formerly Physics of Compact Objects)

Credits

5

Instructor

Enrico Ramirez-Ruiz

ASTR 230 Diffuse Matter in Space

Fundamental physical theory of gaseous nebulae and the interstellar medium. Ionization, thermal balance, theory and observation of emission spectra. Interstellar absorption lines, extinction by interstellar dust. Ultraviolet, optical, infrared, and radio spectra of gaseous nebulae.

Credits

5

Instructor

P. Madau

Quarter offered

Spring

ASTR 233 Galaxies and Cosmology I

Survey of modern physical cosmology, including Newtonian cosmology, curved space-times, observational tests of cosmology, the early universe, inflation, nucleosynthesis, dark matter, and the formation of structure in the universe. (Formerly Physical Cosmology.)

Credits

5

Instructor

K. Bundy

Quarter offered

Winter

ASTR 234 Statistical Techniques in Astronomy

Introduces probability and statistics in data analysis with emphasis on astronomical applications. Topics include probability, Bayes' theorem, statistics, error analysis, correlation, hypothesis testing, parameter estimation, surveys, time-series analysis, surface distributions, and image processing. Students learn to identify the appropriate statistical technique to apply to an astronomical problem and develop a portfolio of analytic and computational techniques that they can apply to their own research.

Credits

5

Instructor

Andrew Skemer

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 240A Galaxies and Cosmology II

Structure and evolutionary histories of nearby galaxies. Stellar populations, galactic dynamics, dark matter, galactic structure and mass distributions. Peculiar galaxies and starbursting galaxies. Structure and content of the Milky Way. Evolution of density perturbations in the early universe. Hierarchical clustering model for galaxy formation and evolution. (Formerly Galactic and Extragalactic Stellar Systems.)

Credits

5

ASTR 257 Observational Astronomy

Covers physical, mathematical, and practical methods of modern astronomical observations at all wavelengths at a level that prepares students to comprehend published data and to plan their own observations. Topics include: noise sources and astrophysical backgrounds; coordinate systems; filter systems; the physical basis of coherent and incoherent photon detectors; astronomical optics and aberrations; design and use of imaging and spectroscopic instruments; antenna theory; aperture synthesis and image reconstruction techniques; and further topics at the discretion of the instructor. Familiarity with UNIX, computer programming, and completion of Physics 116C is strongly recommended as well as at least one upper-division course in astronomy. (Formerly Modern Astronomical Techniques.)

Credits

5

Instructor

A. Skemer

Requirements

Designed for graduate students; available to qualified undergraduate astrophysics majors by instructor permission.

ASTR 260 Instrumentation for Astronomy

An introduction to astronomical instrumentation for infrared and visible wavelengths. Topics include instrument requirements imposed by dust, atmosphere, and telescope; optical, mechanical, and structural design principles and components; electronic and software instrument control. Imaging cameras and spectrographs are described. Offered in alternate academic years.

Credits

5

Instructor

Constance Rockosi

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

ASTR 289 Adaptive Optics and Its Application

Introduction to adaptive optics and its astronomical applications. Topics include effects of atmospheric turbulence on astronomical images, basic principles of feedback control, wavefront sensors and correctors, laser guide stars, how to analyze and optimize performance of adaptive optics systems, and techniques for utilizing current and future systems for astronomical observations.

Credits

5

Instructor

Claire Max

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduate students.

Quarter offered

Winter

ASTR 292 Seminar

Seminar attended by faculty, graduate students, and upper-division undergraduate students.

Credits

0

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 293 Current Literature in Astrophysics

Training for following daily progress in astrophysical research to keep pace with the rapidly evolving scientific field. Students learn how to select and read interesting papers (that span a wide range of topics) efficiently and how to summarize their key results. Students have an opportunity to practice presentation skills in an informal group discussion setting.

Credits

2

Instructor

The Staff

Requirements

Enrollment is restricted to graduatestudents.

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 297A Independent Study

Independent study or research for graduate students who have not yet begun work on their theses. Students submit petition to sponsoring agency. Enrollment restricted to graduate students.

Credits

5

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 297B Independent Study

Independent study or research for graduate students who have not yet begun work on their theses. Students submit petition to sponsoring agency. Enrollment restricted to graduate students.

Credits

10

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 297C Independent Study

Independent study or research for graduate students who have not yet begun work on their theses. Students submit petition to sponsoring agency. Enrollment restricted to graduate students.

Credits

15

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 299A Thesis Research

Credits

5

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 299B Thesis Research

Credits

10

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring

ASTR 299C Thesis Research

Credits

15

Repeatable for credit

Yes

Quarter offered

Fall, Winter, Spring