Graduate Courses: 2012-2013
Courses preceded by an asterik are required for first year graduate students.
AUTUMN, 2012 (University Courses Catalog)
|ASTR 30900||Research Project Seminar||1:00pm-2:50pm
|ASTR 32000||Relativistic Astrophysics||3:00pm-4:20pm
|ASTR 33000||Computational Physics and Astrophysics||3:00pm-4:20pm
|ASTR 44800||Cosmic Microwave Background||1:30pm-2:50pm
|ASTR 45400||Image Processing (Analysis)||4:30pm-5:50pm
|Richard G. Kron|
|ASTR 49900||Graduate Research Seminar||2:30pm-4:30pm
WINTER, 2013 (University Courses Catalog)
|*ASTR 30300||Interstellar Matter||ARR||Doyal ''Al'' Harper|
|ASTR 31600||Dynamics of Particles||ARR||Arieh Konigl|
|ASTR 38000||History of the Telescope||ARR||Donald G. York|
|ASTR 45000||Extreme Optics||ARR||Edward J. Kibblewhite|
|ASTR 49900||Graduate Research Seminar||ARR||Edward J. Kibblewhite|
SPRING, 2013 (University Courses Catalog)
|Stephen M. Kent|
|ASTR 31300||Extragalactic Studies||1:30pm-2:50pm
|ASTR 32100||Cosmology II||1:30pm-2:50pm
|Joshua A. Frieman|
|ASTR 32100||Cosmology II||3:00pm-4:20pm
|Joshua A. Frieman|
|ASTR 49900||Graduate Research Seminar||1:30pm-3:00pm
*ASTR 30100 Stars (Detailed Outline)
Introduction to stars (physical and observational), hydrodynamics of self-gravitating fluids, statistical mechanics and equations of state, energy transport, astrophysical nuclear reactions, stellar models, advanced topics.
*ASTR 30300 Interstellar Matter (Detailed Outline)
Interstellar medium, collisionless systems, distribution of stars in the solar neighborhood, stellar kinematics/dynamics, observations of galactic large-scale structure, theory of galactic structure and evolution. (This course is being modified due to curriculum changes 4/19/13.)
*ASTR 30400 Galaxies (Detailed Outline)
The observed universe, the universe at high redshift, early universe microwave background radiation, relativistic homogeneous isotropic cosmologies, evolution of structure in the universe, primordial nucleosynthesis. (This course is being modified due to curriculum changes 4/19/13.)
ASTR 30900 Research Project Seminar
Students present a seminar series based on their summer research projects.
ASTR 31300 Extragalactic Studies
The course will begin with a historical overview of observations of external galaxies and proceed with discussions of on-going research topics in extragalactic astronomy and cosmology. These include known correlations and scaling relations between different galaxy properties, empirical techniques for determining different physical quantities (such as redshifts, ISM metallicity, and mass), formation of elliptical galaxies, chemical evolution, and the re-ionization epoch.
ASTR 31600 Dynamics of Particles
Dynamics of collisionless plasmas and stellar systems. Stochastic processes and kinetic equations. Dynamics of galaxies and star clusters. Astrophysical plasmas.
ASTR 32000 Relativistic Astrophysics
Special and General relativity and the experimental tests, with applications to astrophysical problems such as super-massive stars, black holes, relativistic star clusters, and gravitational radiation.
ASTR 32100 Cosmology II
Study of physical cosmology with emphasis on the standard big-bang model and its observational and experimental tests.
ASTR 33000 Computational Physics and Astrophysics
Basic computational methods useful for astrophysics, supplemented by specific examples drawn primarily from astrophysics. Starting with basics (e.g., precision, errors and error analysis) and basic computational methods (differentiation, integration/quadrature, Monte Carlo, numerical linear algebra), and then discussing solution of problems posed in terms of ordinary and partial differential equations.
ASTR 38000 History of the Telescope
The history of the idea of telescopes, and of telescopes as working devices, is covered. Following a short discussion of the ideas of "seeing at a distance" in the pre-telescopic world, Galileo's astronomical discoveries are noted. The evolution of the telescope through the 17th, 18th, 19th and 20th centuries are then described. The key developments in telescope systems in each century are highlighted. These include optics, platforms and clocks, structures, rockets, computers, instruments, detectors and observatory sites. The roles of amateur astronomers, wealthy patrons, wealthy entrepreneurs and governments in bringing about these developments are emphasized, and the impact on society of the discoveries made with telescopes is outlined. Serendipitous discovery, personal stories of the main actors on the stage and the feedback between the development of modern civilization and the tools of astronomy are features of the story.
ASTR 44800 Cosmic Microwave Background
ASTR 45000 Extreme Optics
Frontiers in optics will be a review of the state of the art in optics as it paplies to astronomy. Topics to be covered will include
(1) Single dish optics : adaptive optics, building large telescopes and coronography
(2) Interferometers using multiple telescopes
(3) Lasers for guide stars and wavelength control
(4) LIGO and LISA
ASTR 45400 Image Processing (Analysis)
The courses focuses on how to extract information from astronomical raw images on a pixel basis, in situations involving low source light levels relative to background brightnesses. Specific cases considered include detection of AGN variability, high resolution imaging of galactic nuclei, star-galaxy separation, image shear measurements, supernova detection and characterization, planetary transit photometry and direct planet detection. Techniques for accomplishing such tasks include wavelet analysis, deconvolution, image subtraction, adaptive-optics photometry and interferometry. While our main source of information will be the journal articles, the monograph "Astronomical Image and Data Analysis" by Jean-Luc Stark and Fionn Murtagh, Springer 2006, may be a useful reference and is freely available:
ASTR 49900 Graduate Research Seminar
Each week, a graduate student seminar is held. It is scheduled for one hour, but at a time such that no one has to leave if the discussion goes longer. The instructor picks a topic of the semester, and assigns papers that develop the topic from the earliest times to the most recent results. Students each present papers during the course, as assigned and lead a discussion. The purpose is to give students practice in analyzing the literature and in presenting to their peers, as well to assure breadth in the topics covered during their time at Chicago. Starting with the new class entering in Sept. 2012, students stay involved until they graduate.