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Astronomy (ASTR)

ASTR 110 Survey of Astronomy (3)

Introduction to the astronomical universe: sky and celestial objects, planetary motion, planets and the Solar System, Sun and stars, the Milky Way and galaxies, cosmology and the universe.

ASTR 110A Survey of Astronomy (3)

Introduction to the astronomical universe: sky and celestial objects, planetary motion, planets and the Solar System, Sun and stars, the Milky Way and galaxies, cosmology and the universe.

ASTR 110L Survey of Astronomy Laboratory (1)

Observations of constellations and the night sky, the sun and moon, planets, stars, and deep-sky objects; laboratory and observational experiments illustrating basic concepts in astronomy. Offered in the evening. Pre: 110 (or concurrent), or consent.

ASTR 130 Introduction to Archaeoastronomy (3)

Astronomy and celestial lore in ancient cultures: Neolithic Europe, Mayan, Mesoamerican, Egyptian, Mesopotamian, American Indian, Chinese, and Polynesian. Concepts of the cosmos, calendars, eclipse predictions, motion of celestial bodies, and navigation.
Construction of simple observing tools.

ASTR 150 Voyage through the Solar System (3)

An illustrated voyage through the Solar System based on recent scientific results. The class highlights the origin, evolution, and current knowledge of the eight planets, their moons, asteroids, comets, and one star, the Sun. Field trip. (Cross-listed as ERTH 105)

ASTR 185 Introduction to Astronomical Research (1)

Introduction to astronomical research, including literature resources, basic computing skills, software tools, data analysis, scientific communication, and research opportunities. Prepares students for effective internships and directed research projects. ASTR and ASTP majors only. A-F only. (Spring only)

ASTR 210 Foundations of Astronomy (3)

A rigorous overview of modern astronomy: solar system, stellar, galactic and extragalactic astronomy and cosmology. For science and engineering students. Pre: 110; PHYS 151 or PHYS 170.

ASTR 241 Foundations of Astrophysics I: The Solar System (3)

Solar system astrophysics. Dynamics of planets, satellite systems, asteroids and comets;
planetary atmospheres and internal structure; thermal balance; the Sun as a star. Introduces numerical computing. A-F only. Pre: PHYS 170, MATH 242 or 252A, and PHYS 272 (or concurrent). (Fall only)

ASTR 242 Foundations of Astrophysics II: Galaxies and Stars (3)

Stellar and galactic astrophysics. Stellar magnitudes, colors, distances, and spectra. Galactic structure and evolution, active nuclei, large-scale structure, Big-Bang cosmology. Stellar interiors, nuclear “burning,” main-sequence and evolved stars. Introduces computer programming. A-F only. Pre: 241, PHYS 274 (or concurrent), and MATH 243 (or concurrent) or 253A (or concurrent). (Spring only)

ASTR 280 Evolution of the Universe (3)

The Big Bang, origin of the elements, formation and evolution of galaxies and stars. Pre: 110 or 210 or 241 or 242, or consent

ASTR 281 Astrobiology (3)

Are we alone in the universe? Modern astronomical, biological, and geological perspectives on this fundamental question. Searches for life on Mars, oceans on Europa, planets orbiting other stars. Space exploration and colonies, interstellar spaceflight and communication. Pre: 110 or 210, or consent. (Spring only)

ASTR 300 Observational Astronomy (3)

Principles and techniques of optical and near-infrared astronomical observation. Astronomical coordinate systems. Telescopes, cameras, spectrographs, and detectors. Astrometry, photometry, and spectroscopy of astronomical objects. A-F only. Pre: 210 or 242; PHYS 152 or 274; MATH 216, 242, or 252A. (Fall only)

ASTR 300L Observational Astronomy Laboratory (2)

Optical and near-infrared astronomy laboratory. Error analysis, properties of light, data, and image processing. Astrometric, photometric, and spectroscopic measurement. A-F only. Pre: 300 (or concurrent); PHYS 152 or 274; PHYS 152L or 274L; MATH 216, 242, or 252A. (Fall only)

ASTR 301 Observational Astronomy Projects (3)

Astronomical observational research projects. Students use astronomical data and process telescopic observations to produce scientific results, and present these orally and in writing. Students prepare for independent research projects and present research plans orally. A-F only. Pre: 300 and 300L. (Spring only)

ASTR 320 Astronomical Spectroscopy (3)

Introduction to astronomical spectroscopy. Stellar atmospheres, line formation, elements of radiative transfer. Phases of interstellar medium. Emission line diagnostics. Doppler shift and kinematics. A-F only. Pre: 210 or 242; PHYS 152 or 274; MATH 216 or 242 or 252A. (Spring only)

ASTR 326 Modern Extragalactic Astronomy (3)

Use of astronomical surveys to map large-scale distribution of galaxies. Internal structure & dynamics of galaxies. Evolution of galaxy populations over cosmic time. Theoretical understanding of galaxy formation in context of modern Big Bang cosmology. Pre: 210 or 242; and 300 (or concurrent); and PHYS 152 or PHYS 274. Recommended: 280. (Alt. years: spring)

ASTR 380 History of Cosmology and Scientific Thought (3)

History and intellectual context of astronomical discovery; the evolution of ideas of space, time, and motion from the Babylonians to relativistic cosmologies; emphasis on the interaction of astronomy with the history of ideas. Pre: any ASTR or PHYS course. (Spring only)

ASTR 399 Directed Study (V)

Individual reading, observation, or experimentation in astronomy and astrophysics. Repeatable four times. Pre: consent.

ASTR 423 Stellar Astrophysics (3)

Advanced survey of stellar astrophysics, including application of astrometry, photometry, and spectrometry to determine fundamental stellar properties; stellar structure and evolution of single and binary stars; astrophysical distance determination methods; stellar nucleosynthesis. Pre: 242 and 300, and PHYS 480.

ASTR 426 Galaxies & Cosmology (3)

Survey of extragalactic astronomy and cosmology, including: galaxy morphology and kinematics; luminosity functions; dark matter; properties of galaxy groups/ clusters; gravitational lensing; redshifts; cosmological models; the Big Bang; thermal history of the Universe; structure formation. A-F only. Pre: 300 (or concurrent); PHYS 152 or PHYS 274; MATH 216 or MATH 242 or MATH 252A. (Alt. years)

ASTR 430 The Solar System (3)

Observations and physical nature of planets and moons, asteroids, comets, and other small bodies; formation of the Solar System; discovery of other planetary systems; solar activity. Pre: 300; and PHYS 152 or 274; and MATH 216, 242, or 252A. (Alt. years)

ASTR 470 General Relativity & Cosmology (3)

Introduction to general relativity & cosmology. Spacetime metrics, geodesics, Einstein field equations, black holes. Geometry of the universe, redshift, cosmological distances. Cosmological models, dark matters, dark energy. Big Bang nucleosynthesis, recombination, cosmic microwave background, inflation. Pre: PHYS 274; MATH 244 (or concurrent) or MATH 253A (or concurrent). Recommended: 242. (Alt. years: fall) (Cross-listed as PHYS 470)

ASTR 494 Senior Research Project (1)

Seminar focusing on development of professional skills for astronomical research, and on scientific writing as a tool for organizing research. A final paper describing a supervised research project is required. Repeatable one time. A-F only. Pre: 301; 399 (or concurrent) or PHYS 399 (or concurrent).

ASTR 601 Being a Professional Astronomer (1)

Seminar for beginning graduate students focusing on professional skills needed for astronomy and discussing possible research opportunities. Repeatable one time. ASTR majors only. Graduate students only. CR/NC only. (Fall only)

ASTR 622 The Interstellar Medium (3)

Astrophysics of diffuse matter, HII regions, molecular clouds, etc. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 623 Stellar Interiors and Evolution (3)

Structure and evolution; energy sources, radiative processes; relations to observables. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 626 Galaxies (3)

Observations and stellar dynamics of elliptical and spiral galaxies including our galaxy, globular clusters, and dark matter. Galaxy formation and evolution. Pre: consent. (Alt. years: spring)

ASTR 627 Cosmology (3)

Geometry and evolution of the universe. Dark matter. Early universe. Formation of large–scale structure, galaxies, and clusters. Cosmological models. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 630 The Solar System (3)

Survey of observational data and physical concepts on planets and smaller bodies; formation of planetary systems; solar activity. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 631 Radiative Transfer Stellar Atmospheres (3)

Excitation, ionization, and radiative transfer in stellar atmospheres; model atmospheres, formation of line and continuum radiation. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 633 Astrophysical Techniques (3)

Telescopes, positional astronomy, photon detection, error analysis, photometry, spectroscopy. Pre: consent. (Fall only)

ASTR 634 Astronomical Instrumentation (3)

Design and operation of astronomical instrumentation. Physics of optical and infrared detectors. Wavefront sensors and adaptive optics. Radio and infrared interferometry. Optical design: methods and software. A-F only. Pre: 633 (with a minimum grade of B-). (Alt. years: spring)

ASTR 635 Fundamentals of Astrophysics (3)

Applications of fundamental physics to astrophysical situations. Elements of general relativity. Basics of hydrodynamics and shock waves. Radiative processes, high energy astrophysics. Modern dynamics. Pre: consent. (Fall only)

ASTR 640 General Relativity (3)

Introduction to gravity and general relativity. Tensor basics, classical scalar, vector and tensor field theories. Exact symmetric Einstein equation, gravito-magnetic weak field, and radiation solutions. Pre: consent. (Alt. years)

ASTR 641 Active Galaxies (3)

Phenomenology of active galactic nuclei, black holes, accretion flows and jets, emission mechanisms, host galaxies, and cosmic evolution. Pre: 635 or consent. (Alt. years: spring)

ASTR 657 Astrochemistry-A Molecular Approach (3)

Formation of astrobiologically important molecules and their precursors in the interstellar medium and in our solar system: first principles and latest trends. Pre: consent. (Fall only) (Cross-listed as CHEM 657 and ERTH 657)

ASTR 699 Directed Research (V)

Repeatable unlimited times. Pre: consent

ASTR 700 Thesis Research (V)

Repeatable unlimited times.

ASTR 734 Astronomy Seminar I (V)

Selected advanced topics in astronomy and astrophysics. Available for 1 to 3 credit hours by arrangement. Repeatable unlimited times. Pre: consent.

ASTR 735 Astronomy Seminar II (V)

Selected advanced topics in astronomy and astrophysics. Available for 1 to 3 credit hours by arrangement. Repeatable unlimited times. Pre: consent.

ASTR 736 Astronomy Seminar III (V)

Selected advanced topics in astronomy and astrophysics. Available for 1 to 3 credit hours by arrangement. Repeatable unlimited times. Pre: consent.

ASTR 740 Astrobiology Seminar: Origin, Evolution and the Role of Water for Life in the Universe (1)

Interdisciplinary research topics in astrobiology as they relate to the theme of water: formation in space, role in creating pre-biotic molecules, delivery to earth, and terrestrial planet habitability. Repeatable three times. Pre: graduate level sciences and ideas, or consent.

ASTR 750 Scientific Grant Writing (1)

Principles of scientific grant writing are taught by working on draft proposals through a mix of lectures, discussions, and hands on activities. The final proposal will be reviewed and evaluated via a review panel. Graduate students only. A-F only. (Fall only)

ASTR 758 Programming and Algorithms for Astronomers (2)

Distillation of modern computer science fundamentals and paradigms, with applications
to astronomy. Common algorithms and essential programming techniques. Assignments include extensive Python programming practice. Open to graduate students in any physical science. Graduate students only. (Alt. years)

ASTR 760 Modern General Relativity (3)

Differential geometry, special relativity, Einstein equations, gravitational phenomena, equivalence principles, black holes, gravitational waves, cosmology, relativistic stars, experimental tests, computational techniques. Graduate students only in PHYS or ASTR. (Alt. years: fall) (Cross-listed as PHYS 760)

ASTR 777 Star Formation (2)

Molecular clouds, collapse processes, physics of circumstellar disks and accretion, properties of young stars, outflows and jets, formation of binaries, extrasolar planets and planet formation, meteorites and the early solar system. Pre: graduate standing or consent. (Alt. years: spring)

ASTR 790 Astro-ph Seminar (1)

Seminar discussions of the most recent research papers covering all areas of astronomy. Student lead discussion sessions and discuss papers of their choice during the semester. ASTR majors only. Graduate students only. CR/NC only. (Fall only)

ASTR 791 Cosmology Seminar (1)

Students and researchers will review and discuss the most important and exciting cosmological results in depth. ASTR and PHYS majors only. Graduate students only.

ASTR 792 Stars and Planets Lunch and Talks (SPLAT) Seminar (1)

Seminar for graduate students and researchers discussing the latest results on solar, stellar, and exoplanet research. Repeatable one time. ASTR majors only. Graduate students only. CR/NC only.

ASTR 800 Dissertation Research (V)

Repeatable unlimited times