Ay 111 a. Introduction to Current Astrophysics Research. 3 units; first term. This course is intended primarily for first-year Ay graduate students, although participation is open and encouraged. Students are required to attend seminar-style lectures given by astrophysics faculty members, describing their research, to attend the weekly astronomy colloquia, and to follow these with additional readings on the subject. At the end of each term, students are required to summarize in oral or written form (at the discretion of the instructor), one of the covered subjects that is of most interest to them. Instructor: Hallinan
Ge/Ay 117. Statistics and Data Analysis. 9 units (3-0-6); Prerequisites: CS 1 and instructor’s permission. For course description, see Geological and Planetary Sciences.
Ay 119. Astroinformatics. 6 units (3-0-3); third term. This class is an introduction to the data science skills from the applied computer science, statistics, and information technology, that are needed for a modern research in any data-intensive field, but with a special focus on the astronomical applications. Open to graduate and upper-divisibe on undergraduate students in all options. The topics covered include design of data systems, regression techniques, supervised and unsupervised machine learning, databases, Bayesian statistics, high performance computing, software carpentry, deep learning, and visualization. The class will feature real-world examples from cutting-edge projects in which the instructors are involved. Instructors: Djorgovski/Graham/Mahabal.
Ay 121. Radiative Processes. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. Prerequisite: Ph106bc, Ph 125 or equivalent (undergraduates). The interaction of radiation with matter: radiative transfer, emission, and absorption. Compton processes, coherent emission processes, synchrotron radiation, collisional excitation, spectroscopy of atoms and molecules. Instructors: Hallinan,Kirby
Ay 122 abc. Astronomical Measurements and Instrumentation. 9 units (3-0-6); first term (a), second term (b). Prerequisites: Ph 106bc or equivalent. Measurement and signal analysis techniques througout the electromagnetic spectrum. Courses may include lab work and field trips to Caltech observatories. Ay 122a concentrates on infrared, optical, and ultraviolet techniques: telescopes, optics, detectors, photometry, spectroscopy, active/adaptive optics, coronography. Imaging devices and image processing. Ay 122b concentrates on radio through submillimeter techniques: antennae, receivers, mixers, and amplifiers. Interferometers and aperture synthesis arrays. Signal analysis techniques and probability and statistics, as relevant to astronomical measurement. Ay 122c (not offered 2018–19) concentrates on X-ray through gamma-ray techniques. Instructors: (a) Howard, Mawet, (b) Hallinan
Ay 123. Structure and Evolution of Stars. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. Prerequisites: Ay 101; Ph 125 or equivalent (undergraduates). Thermodynamics, equation of state, convection, opacity, radiative transfer, stellar atmospheres, nuclear reactions, and stellar models. Evolution of low- and high-mass stars, supernovae, and binary stars. Instructor: Fuller
Ay 124. Structure and Dynamics of Galaxies. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. Prerequisites: Ay 21; Ph 106 or equivalent (undergraduates). Stellar dynamics and properties of galaxies; kinematics and dynamics of our galaxy; spiral structure; stellar composition, masses, and rotation of external galaxies; star clusters; galactic evolution; binaries, groups, and clusters of galaxies. Instructor: Hopkins
Ay 125. High-Energy Astrophysics. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. Prerequisites: Ph 106 and Ph 125 or equivalent (undergraduates). High-energy astrophysics, the final stages of stellar evolution; supernovae, binary stars, accretion disks, pulsars; extragalactic radio sources; active galactic nuclei; black holes. Instructor: Kasliwal
Ay 126. Interstellar and Intergalactic Medium. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. Prerequisite: Ay 102 (undergraduates). Physical processes in the interstellar medium. Ionization, thermal and dynamic balance of interstellar medium, molecular clouds, hydrodynamics, magnetic fields, H II regions, supernova remnants, star formation, global structure of interstellar medium. Instructor: Hillenbrand
Ay 127. Cosmology and Galaxy Formation. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. Prerequisites: Ay 21; Ph 106 or equivalent (undergraduates). Cosmology; extragalactic distance determinations; relativistic cosmological models; galaxy formation and clustering; thermal history of the universe, microwave background; nucleosynthesis; cosmological tests. Instructors: Steidel/Martin
Ge/Ay 132. Atomic and Molecular Processes in Astronomy and Planetary Sciences. 9 units (3-0-6). For course description, see Geological and Planetary Sciences.
Ge/Ay 133. The Formation and Evolution of Planetary Systems. 9 units (3-0-6). For course description, see Geological and Planetary Sciences.
Ge/Ay 137. Planetary Physics. 9 units (3-0-6); For course description, see Geological and Planetary Sciences.
Ay 141 abc. Research Conference in Astronomy. 3 units (1-0-2); first, second, third terms. Oral reports on current research in astronomy, providing students an opportunity for practice in the organization and presentation of technical material. A minimum of two presentations will be expected from each student each year. In addition, students are encouraged to participate in a public-level representation of the same material for posting to an outreach website. This course fulfills the option communication requirement and is required of all astronomy graduate students who have passed their preliminary exams. It is also recommended for astronomy seniors. Graded pass/fail. Instructors: (a) Kasliwal/Fuller (b) Kasliwal/Hallinan; (c) Kasliwal/Kirby
Ay 142. Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics. Units in accordance with work accomplished. The student should consult a member of the department and have a definite program of research outlined. Approval by the student’s adviser must be obtained before registering. 36 units of Ay 142 or Ay 143 required for candidacy for graduate students. Graded pass/fail.
Ay 143. Reading and Independent Study. Units in accordance with work accomplished. The student should consult a member of the department and have a definite program of reading and independent study outlined. Approval by the student’s adviser must be obtained before registering. 36 units of Ay 142 or Ay 143 required for candidacy for graduate students. Graded pass/fail.
Ge/Ay 159. Astrobiology. 9 units (3-0-6). For course description, see Geological and Planetary Sciences.
Ay 190. Computational Astrophysics. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. Prerequisites: Ph 20–22 (undergraduates). Introduction to essential numerical analysis and computational methods in astrophysics and astrophysical data analysis. Basic numerical methods and techniques; N-body simulations; fluid dynamics (SPH/grid-based); MHD; radiation transport; reaction networks; data analysis methods; numerical relativity. Not offered 2018–19.
Ay/Ge 198. Special Topics in the Planetary Sciences. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. Topic for 2018–19 is Extrasolar Planets. Thousands of planets have been identified in orbit around other stars. Astronomers are now embarking on understanding the statistics of extrasolar planet populations and characterizing individual systems in detail, namely star-planet, planet-planet and planet-disk dynamical interactions, physical parameters of planets and their composition, weather phenomena, etc. Direct and indirect detection techniques are now completing the big picture of extra-solar planetary systems in all of their natural diversity. The seminar-style course will review the state of the art in exoplanet science, take up case studies, detail current and future instrument needs, and anticipate findings. Instructors: Howard, Mawet
Ay 211. Contemporary Extragalactic Astronomy. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. Prerequisites: Ay 123, Ay 124, and Ay 127. Topics in extragalactic astronomy and cosmology, including observational probes of dark matter and dark energy; cosmological backgrounds and primordial element abundances; galaxy formation and evolution, including assembly histories, feedback and environmental effects; physics of the intergalactic medium; the role of active galactic nuclei; galactic structure and stellar populations; future facilities and their likely impact in the field. Not offered 2018–19.
Ay 215. Seminar in Theoretical Astrophysics. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. Course for graduate students and seniors in astronomy. Topic for 2017–18 will be astronomical transients (with an emphasis on optical and infrared transients), including supernovae, novae, tidal disruption events, stellar mergers, superluminous supernovae, transients in the luminosity gap between novae and supernovae. Students will be required to lead some discussions. Instructors: Not offered 2018–19.
Ay 218. Extrasolar Planets. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. Not offered 2018–19.
Ay 219. Elements in the Universe and Galactic Chemical Evolution. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. Prerequisites: Ay 121, 123, 124, 126. Survey of the formation of the elements in the universe as a function of cosmic time. Review of the determination of abundances in stars, meteorites, H II regions, and in interstellar and intergalactic gas. Overview of models of galactic chemical evolution. Participants will measure elemental abundances from the Keck spectrum of a star and construct their own numerical chemical evolution models. Not offered 2018–19.