Study-unit Code
In all curricula
Sara Palmerini
  • Sara Palmerini
  • 42 ore - Sara Palmerini
Course Regulation
Coorte 2022
Learning activities
Attività formative affini o integrative
Academic discipline
Type of study-unit
Opzionale (Optional)
Type of learning activities
Attività formativa monodisciplinare
Language of instruction
The course will provide basic information of the following items:The celestial sphere and Astronomical Instruments;Structure and size of the solar system;The stars and tehir eveolutiion;The Milky Way;The Galaxies;The large-scale structure of the Universe;Cosmology
Reference texts
Lesson Notes

A.Unsold, B. Baschek- The new Cosmos-Springer 5th Edition

Carroll-Ostilie - An Introduction to Modern Astrophysics - Pearson
Educational objectives
At the end of the course the studend should have acquired the general picture of our understanding of the Universe based on the fundamental laws of the Physics. The student should also be able to perform simple calculation to derive physical quantities of Astophysical interest using the methods discussed during the course.
For a complete understanding of the course the student should have succesfully followed the Calculus and Physics courses of the first years. A basic knowledge of the electromagnetism would be importan too.
Teaching methods
Other information
No Further information
Learning verification modality
Oral examination at the end of th course. Free initial choice of one of the topics of the course and subsequent verification of acquired knowledge in the field emission mechanisms, stellar structure and evolution of stars, as well as the knowledge of the main characteristics of galactic and extragalactic sources. The candidate is required ability 'to connect properly the various arguments over. It is also required capacity of critical analysis of topics of great importance in modern astrophysics and the ability to derive results of astrophysical interest through the use of the physical processes discussed during the course. The colloquium has a duration of about 45 min.
Extended program
0) Basic introduction to Electromagnetism and Modern Physiscs. 1) The celestial sphere and Astronomical Instruments
- Astronomical Coordinate systems: equatorial (right ascension and declination) and altazimuth (altitude and azimuth)
- Sunrise and setting of the stars
- The time
- The main types of telescopes for observations at all wavelengths

2) Structure and size of the solar system.
- Kepler's laws.
- Apparent motions of the Sun, Moon, planets.
- Measurement of planetary distances. The seasons on Earth.
- The Newton's gravitation law. 
- Gravitational perturbations of planetary orbits

3) The stars.
- Physical parameters of a star, radius, mass, and temperature.
- Definition of the apparent and absolute magnitude.
- Stellar spectra and their classification. 
- Chemical composition of the stars. The Sun as a star.
- Methods of measurement of stellar distances: trigonometric parallaxes and photometric.

4) Stellar evolution.
- The HR diagram
- The interstellar matter and the birth of stars.
- Internal structure of the stars and nuclear fusion processes.
- Evolution of low-, intermediate and large mass stars.
- Final Stages of the life of a star, white dwarfs and neutron stars, blacks holes

5) The Milky Way.
- Structure and dynamics of the Galaxy
- The Stellar Populations
- Formation of the Galaxy

6) The Galaxies.
- Morphological classification of galaxies: ellipticals, spirals, barred spirals, irregular.
- Measure distances, dimensions and masses of the galaxies.
- The Hubble law
- Normal and peculiar galaxies. The Active Galactic Nuclei
- Non-thermal emission mechanisms.

7) The large-scale structure of the Universe.
- Clusters of galaxies
- The problem of dark mass.

8) Cosmology.
- The expansion of the Universe, the problem of chemical abundances, the background radiation.
- The theory of the Big Bang.
- Current problems in cosmology
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