ASTRONOMY 5630

EXTRAGALACTIC ASTRONOMY

Fall 2014

 
TIME AND LOCATION: Tuesday, Thursday, 2:00-3:15pm, Astronomy 265

INSTRUCTOR: Mark Whittle

OFFICE HOURS: Room 216, Astronomy Building, M, W, 2:00-3:00 (please email first); Telephone 924-4900 ; email: dmw8f@virginia.edu

WEB PAGE: http://sol.astro.virginia.edu/class/whittle/astr553/
(The UVa Collab web page points to this; but use it for, e.g., anonymous feedback if you wish)

TEXTBOOKS:

Unfortunately, there is no text which covers all the topics. However, the following primary text covers much of the material, though in a sequence rather different from the one we'll take. In practice, my web notes (found at the above address) form the primary material, and I expect you to have looked over them before each class. I have put a number of other books on reserve which you may also find useful.

Note, you can find Errata for B&M and S&G

COURSE CONTENT : The pair of classes, 5630 & 5640 (formerly 553 & 554), aim to survey extragalactic astronomy and cosmology at a level suitable for graduate and senior undergraduate astronomy students.

Topics emphasized in 5630 include: morphological, photometric and dynamical properties of normal galaxies; Star formation; galaxy interactions, groups and clusters; galaxy nuclei and AGN.

Topics emphasized in 5640 include: Cosmology and the high-redshift universe.

While ASTR 5630 is a core course and is taught every two years, ASTR 5640 is an elective and will be taught every four years.

A more specific list of the 20 topics we shall cover is given in the Course Outline Page.

PREREQUISITES : Some astronomy, physics and math background will be assumed, comparable to ASTR 1220/2120, MATH 1310/1320/3255/3251 and PHYS 1610/1620/2610/2620. However, since one aim of this course is to touch on many topics, we will not have time to develop any topic in great mathematical or physical depth. Consequently, I am hoping that the course will be relatively accessible (for example, keen 3rd or 4th year undergraduates should be able to do fine).

Some homework problems require modest familiarity with a programming language (e.g. Fortran, C, IDL, Python). Mathematica, while useful for a number of things, isn't really suited to some of the problems.

REQUIREMENTS : There are two requirements for completing this course.

HONOR CODE: As with all courses at UVa, all your graded work is subject to the Honor Code. Of course, I expect you will be discussing the homework material together, but when it comes to writing up your answers, this is expected to be exclusively your own work.