Astronomy Graduate Courses • Spring 2018

Planetary Science Seminar - C292, section 001

Planetary Science Seminar

C292, section 001

CCN: 22716

Instructor: Burkhard Militzer

The departments of Astronomy and Earth and Planetary Science offer a joint research seminar in advanced topics in planetary science, featuring speakers drawn from graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, faculty, and visiting scholars. Topics will span planetary interiors; surface morphology; atmospheres; dynamics; planet formation; and astrobiology. Speakers will vary from semester to semester. Meetings will be held once a week for 1 hour each, and the schedule of speakers will be determined on the first day of class. To pass the class, participants will be required to give a 30-minute presentation, either on their own research or on …


Seminar - 292, section 008


292, section 008

CCN: 15306

Instructor: Paul Kalas

In addition to the weekly colloquium, the Department offers seminars in advanced topics, several of which are announced at the beginning of each semester. A maximum of 5 units may be taken per semester with a limitation of 2 in any one section.


Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics - C202

Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics


CCN: 22702

Instructor: Chung-Pei Ma

Principles of gas dynamics, self-gravitating fluids, magnetohydrodynamics and elementary kinetic theory. Aspects of convection, fluid oscillations, linear instabilities, spiral density waves, shock waves, turbulence, accretion disks, stellar winds, and jets.


Astrophysical Techniques - 203

Astrophysical Techniques


CCN: 22703

Instructor: James Graham

Introduction to the flow of astronomical signals through telescope optics and into detectors; subsequent calibration, deconvolution of instrumental artifacts, and analysis. A broad wavelength approach is maintained with focus on shared fundamental concepts. Students "adopt a wavelength band" for assignments and presentations. Analysis and simulation of astronomical signals, noise, and errors.


Stellar Dynamics and Galactic Structure - 218

Stellar Dynamics and Galactic Structure


CCN: 22705

Instructor: Mariska Kriek

A basic course. Structure and kinematics of the galaxy; stellar population concepts; dynamics of stellar systems with and without encounters.


Special Topics in Astrophysics - 250

Special Topics in Astrophysics


CCN: 22706

Instructor: Josh Bloom

Python is becoming the de facto superglue language for modern scientific computing. In this course we will learn Pythonic interactions with databases, imaging processing, advanced statistical and numerical packages, web frameworks, machine-learning, and parallelism. Each week will involve lectures and coding projects. In the final project, students will build a working codebase useful for their own research domain. This class is for any student working in a quantitative discipline and with familiarity with Python. Those who completed the Python Bootcamp or equivalent will be eligible.


Computational Methods in Theoretical Astrophysics - 255

Computational Methods in Theoretical Astrophysics


CCN: 22708

Instructor: Richard Klein

A broad in-depth survey of state-of-the-art numerical approaches to astrophysical self-gravitational gas dynamics with application to large scale simulation of coupled non-linear astrophysical flows. Finite-difference approaches for Lagrangian and Eulerian astrophysical hydrodynamics and coupled radiation-hydrodynamics. N-body gravitation techniques including direct N-body, P-M, P3M, and hierarchical Tree. Particle gas dynamics methods such as smooth particle hydrodynamics (SPH), adaptive SPH and unification of SPH, and gravity tree hierarchies (TREE-SPH). Advanced techniques such as higher order Godunov finite difference methods with …


Theoretical Astrophysics Seminar - C285

Theoretical Astrophysics Seminar


CCN: 22709

Instructor: Eliot Quataert

The study of theoretical astrophysics.


Introduction to Current Research - 290B

Introduction to Current Research


CCN: 22710

Instructor: Eugene Chiang

Continuation of 290A. Study of a research topic with an individual staff member.


Cosmology - 290C



CCN: 22711

Instructor: Martin White

Weekly seminar on research in cosmology, typically featuring outside speakers.