Welcome to Astro 580!
Instructor: Prof. Steven Kawaler
From the course catalog:
Astro 580. Stellar Astrophysics. (3-0) Cr. 3. Prereq: 405
Prereq: 405 or 505. The interior structure and atmospheric properties of stars: Stellar structure equations and constitutive relations: energy generation, energy transport by radiation and convection; equation of state, nuclear energy generation and nucleosynthesis. Numerical and analytic solutions to the equations of structure and evolution. Observational connections through the theory of radiative transfer. Line and continuum processes and sources of opacity. Non-LTE and statistical equilibrium. Line profiles. Interpretation of stellar spectra: temperature, pressure, and abundance determinations. Stellar evolution from formation to final phases.
We meet Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 2:10-3:00 in Physics 45
- Exam 3 is in class on Thursday, May 7, from 12:00-2:00. It will be open-book and open-note, and you'll be free to use
any sort of calculator you'd like (if you need one).
- Reading, Week of April 27
- Project - due on Friday, May 1, 2015
on the MESA project is here for a tool to help with your project. Or if
you prefer to see a narrative about the MESA project, go
here for the first paper describing
- The written format of your final project should be in the form of a referee report on your chosen paper. To help see what you might produce, please have a look at the following::
- EXAM 2: was April 3-7
- For fun: Interferometric images of rapidly rotating stars, a review
by Ming Zhao, John Monnier, and Xiao Che
- Valley of beta stability & neutron enrichment slides
- Reading for the week of March 2
- Problem Set 3 was due March 2
- EXAM 1 - Take Home: was distributed online on Feb. 20, due in class on Feb. 23
- Real convection (simulations and observations)
- Slides about EOS and opacities
- Problem Set 2 was due February 11
- HK&T, 2.4, 2.10, 3.1, 3.2, 3.4, and for a bonus, 3.9
- Reading, week of February 2: HKT, Chapter 4,
Article by Iglesias and Rogers on the OPAL opacity calculations
- Reading for the week of January 26: HKT, Chapter 3
- Homework 1 (due January 26): HKT 1.3, 1.4, 1.6, 1.9, with bonus points for 2.5
- Slinky demo of gravitational time scale
- Friday's "Journal Stars" chats:
Web materials and resources for class
As graduate students, you should be able to read the 'technical'
literature of any physical science and at least glean some things of interest
(assuming you can get through the jargon of the field). To that end, here
are links to the main journals of astronomy - have a glance occasionally
at the current online journals to see how the field is doing! All are
available from ISU-based computers via the WWW.
Astrophysical Journal - the premier journal of astrophysics.
in the "ApJ" can be purely theoretical, or purely observational, but most lie
somewhere in between. The "ApJ" consists of three separate publications:
the main Journal, the ApJ Letters which are short papers of
high interest that get published rapidly, and the ApJ
Supplement which contains longer papers (frequently catalogs and
other reference papers). In addtion, the ApJ publishes occasional CD-ROMs as
part of the Supplement.
Astronomical Journal - the premier journal of observational
astronomy. "AJ" papers concentrate on observations, with limited
interpretation, but there is no hard and fast rule.
- Astronomy and
Astrophysics - another top journal, concentrating on European
research (though I publish there because there are no page charges!).
The Europeans have it right - no distinction between astronomy and
astrophysics - it is all there. Includes a 'Letters' section that contains
short papers with rapid turnaround within the same covers. Much more
material on stellar astrophysics than the ApJ.
- Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
- the main journal for British astronomy, it also publishes papers from
astronomers around the world. A top journal.
- Annual Reviews of
Astronomy and Astrophysics - authoritative reviews from experts
in a wide variety of subjects - uniformly excellent papers, and a good "first
place to go" when exploring a new field within astronomy.
- Other Journals - other smaller journals are more specialized in
topic or approach. For example,
of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (or PASP) has frequent
papers on astronmical instrumentation, and dissertation abstracts.
Icarus is the premier journal for solar
system/planetary astronomy. Nature, Science, and
Scientific American frequently have important astrophysics
papers of broad intrest. Etc., etc.
- Online access to the literature- In addition to the above
journal links, most of the literature is available for indexed searches by
author, keyword, and object via the
Data Service - an incredibly useful resource that I use at least 5 times
Preprints - There is a heavily used
through arXiv.org - nearly all astronomy preprints are posted there before
publication. Also well indexed. Selected papers are also discussed in the Astrobites site
Here's the course syllabus
Consider a spherical cow...
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