Astronomy 5830(Prof. Martini, Autumn 2016) skip navigation

Astronomy 5830
Observed Properties of Astronomical Systems

Autumn Semester 2016

Prof. Paul Martini
MWF 8:50-10:20am
4054 McPherson Laboratory

[Contact | Course Description | Syllabus | Evaluation | Internet Resources | Topics and Reading ]


Office: 4021 McPherson Lab
Office Phone: 614-292-8632
Office Hours: by appointment or whenever my door is open

Course Description

Astronomy 5830 is intended to provide an overview of observational astronomy at the introductory graduate level, with an emphasis on stars and galaxies. The topics we will cover include the basic properties of stars, quiescent and active galaxies, an overview of the properties of the Milky Way, and several other topics including the solar system, exoplanets, and clusters of galaxies. Throughout the course, we will emphasize how these properties are measured or inferred from astronomical observations. We will also cover observational techniques at various wavelengths.


The class syllabus and course outline are in this PDF File
I recommend that you obtain a copy of Galactic Astronomy by Binney and Merrifield and Active Galactic Nuclei by Peterson. Many of the readings for the class will be drawn from these books, and you may find them useful reference texts for your future research.


The course grade will be based on homework (20%), writing assignments (20%), an observing proposal (20%), class participation (20%), and a final exam (20%). Details are provided on the syllabus.
Homework 1 Due Sep 9 (jupyter notebook)
Writing Assignment 1 Due Sep 23
Homework 2 Due Oct 7 Oct 10 (SciServer Compute Workshop Documentation)
Observing Proposal Topic Due Oct 21
Homework 3 Due Oct 28 [peletier.dat]
Writing Assignment 2 Due Nov 14
Observing Proposal Due Nov 28 30
Homework 4 Due Dec 7 [sdssqso.fits | sdssqso.dat]
TAC Grades Due Dec 7
Final Exam Due Dec 12

Internet Resources

Various Useful Sites:

ADS Abstract Service
Earth View
Chandra Proposal Planning Toolkit
Julian Date Converter
Chi-Squared Calculator

Some Astronomy Picture Sites:

Astronomy Picture of the Day
NASA Planetary Photojournal A great collection of planetary images at JPL.
Latest pictures from the Saturn system returned by the Cassini spacecraft.
Latest pictures from the Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity.
Latest results from the Hubble Space Telescope
Pictures from the Chandra X-ray Observatory
Pictures from the Spitzer Space Telescope

Topics and Readings from Galactic Astronomy, Active Galactic Nuclei and Additional References

Listed below are readings from the books, as well as some additional related references that you might find useful. Readings in bold are required, readings in red and bold are for in-class discussion, and the rest are optional. I will update this list throughout the semester, and aim to have highlighted the required reading by approximately the week before we cover the material.

Part I. Stars

L1: Distances and Motions [Aug 24]
GA Sections 2.1, 2.2
JSkyCalc Observing Aid
The Hipparcos Space Astrometry Mission
RAVE: The Radial Velocity Experiment
GAIA Satellite
Upton, E.K.L. (1970), Calibration of the Hyades-Praesepe main sequence by a new treatment of the stellar motions, AJ, 75, 1097
Popowki and Gould (1998), Systematics of RR Lyrae Statistical Parallax. I. Mathematics, ApJ, 506, 259
L2: Masses and Radii [Aug 26]
GA Sections 3.1, 3.2
Michelson and Pease (1921), Measurement of the Diameter of alpha Orionis with the Interferometer, ApJ, 53, 249
Torres et al. (2009), Accurate masses and radii of normal stars: modern results and applications, A&RAv, 18, 67 (link)
Binary Star Simulator
Eclipsing Binary Star Simulator
L3: Spectral Classification [Aug 29]
GA Section 3.3
Morgan and Keenan (1973), Spectral Classification, ARA&A, 11, 29
Kirkpatrick et al. (1999), Dwarfs Cooler than M: The Definition of Spectral Type L Using Discoveries from the 2 Micron All-Sky Survey (2MASS), ApJ, 519, 802
Burrows et al. (2003), Beyond the T Dwarfs: Theoretical Spectra, Colors, and Detectability of the Coolest Brown Dwarfs,ApJ, 596, 587
Burgasser et al. (2006), A Unified Near-infrared Spectral Classsification Scheme for T Dwarfs, ApJ, 637, 1067
Cushing et al. (2011), The Discovery of Y Dwarfs using Data from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), ApJ, 743, 50
L4, L5: Stellar Properties and Relationships [Aug 31, Sep 2]
GA Sections 3.4, 3.5
Anders and Grevesse (1989), Abundances of the Elements, Geo. et Cos. Acta, 53, 197
Bessel, M.S. et al. (1998), Model Atmospheres, broad-band colors, bolometric corrections, and temperature calibrations for O-M stars, AA, 333, 231 [erratum 337, 321]
Bressan et al. (1993), Evolutionary sequences of stellar models with new radiative opacities. II - Z = 0.02, AAS, 100, 647
Duchene, G. and Kraus, A. (2013), Stellar Multiplicity, ARA&A, 51, 269
Epstein, C.R. and Pinsonneault, M.H. (2014), How good a clock is rotation? The stellar rotation-mass-age relationship for old field stars, ApJ, 780, 159
Henry et al. (1999), The Optical Mass-Luminosity Relation at the End of the Main Sequence (0.08-0.20 Msolar, ApJ, 512, 864
Raghavan, D. et al. (2010), A Survey of Stellar Families: Multiplicity of Solar-type Stars, ApJS, 190, 1
Torres et al. (2009), Accurate masses and radii of normal stars: modern results and applications, A&RAv, 18, 67 (link)
L6: Stellar Photometry and Spectrophotometry [Sep 7]
GA Section 2.3
Bessell, M. (2005), Standard Photometric Systems, ARA&A, 43, 293
L7: Stellar Luminosity and Mass Functions [Sep 9]
GA Section 3.6
Gould, A., Bahcall, J.N., and Flynn, C. (1996), Disk M Dwarf Luminosity Function from Hubble Space Telescope Star Counts, ApJ, 465, 759
Chabrier, G. (2003), Galactic Stellar and Substellar Initial Mass Function, PASP, 115, 763
L8, L9: Stellar Evolution in an Observational Context [Sep 12, 14]
GA Section 5.1
Bressan, A. et al. (1993) Evolutionary sequences of stellar models with new radiative opacities. II. Z = 0.02, AAS, 100, 647
Girardi, L. et al. (2000) Evolutionary tracks and isochrones for low- and intermediate-mass stars: From 0.15 to 7 Msun, and from Z=0.0004 to 0.03, AAS, 141, 371
Heger, A. et al. (2003) How Massive Single Stars End Their Life, ApJ, 591, 288
L10: Variability in Stars and Remnants [Sep 16]
GA Section 5.1.10

Part II. Observation Methods

L11: Signal and Noise [Sep 26]
Howell, S. (1989) Two-dimensional aperture photometry - Signal-to-noise ratio of point-source observations and optimal data-extraction techniques, PASP, 101, 616
Bernstein, G. (2002) Advanced Exposure-Time Calculations: Undersampling, Dithering, Cosmic Rays, Astrometry, and Ellipticities, PASP, 114, 98
L12: Detection of Light [Sep 26]
Rieke, G. (2003) Detection of Light, Cambridge University Press
Condon, J.J. and Ransom, S.M., Essential Radio Astronomy
Merline, W. and Howell, S. (1995) A Realistic Model for Point-sources Imaged on Array Detectors: The Model and Initial Results, ExA, 6, 613
Kelson, D. (2003) Optimal Techniques in Two-dimensional Spectroscopy: Background Subtraction for the 21st Century, PASP, 115, 688
L13: Big Data [Sep 28]
SciServer Compute

Part III. Solar System and Exoplanets

L14: The Sun [Sep 30]
Basic Astronomical Data for the Sun from Eric Mamajek
Basu & Antia (2008), Helioseismology and solar abundances, Physics Reports, 457, 217
Asplund et al. (2009), The Chemical Composition of the Sun, ARA&A, 47, 481
Usoskin, I.G. A History of Solar Activity over Millennia, Living Reviews in Solar Physics, 5, 3
L15: The Solar System [Oct 3]
IAU Minor Planet Center
Malhotra (1995), The Origin of Pluto's Orbit: Implications for the Solar System beyond Neptune, AJ, 111, 420
de Pater & Lissauer (2001), Planetary Sciences, Cambridge University Press
Jewitt & Haghighipour (2007), Irregular Satellites of the Planets: Products of Capture in the Early Solar System, ARA&A, 45, 261
Luu & Jewitt (2002), Kuiper Belt Objects: Relics from the Accretion Disk of the Sun, ARA&A, 40, 63
Zhang, Z.-W. et al. The TAOS Project: Results from Seven Years of Survey Data, AJ, 146, 14
L16, L17: Exoplanets [Oct 5]
The Extrasolar Planets Encyclopaedia
Kepler Orrery III by Daniel Fabrycky
Butler et al (2006), Catalog of Nearby Exoplanets, ApJ, 646, 505
Cumming et al. (2008), The Keck Planet Search: Detectability and the Minimum Mass and Orbital Period Distribution of Extrasolar Planets, PASP, 120, 531
Wright and Gaudi (2013), Exoplanet Detection Methods, in Planets, Stars and Stellar Systems, Springer
Winn, J.(2010), Transits and Occultations, Exoplanets by Sara Seager. University of Arizona Press, 55 arXiv:1001.2010
Winn, J.N and Fabrycky, D.C. (2015), The Occurrence and Architecture of Exoplanetary Systems, ARA&A, 53, 409

Part IV. Milky Way

L18: Interstellar Extinction [Oct 7]
GA Section 3.7
Cardelli, J.A., Clayton, G.C., and Mathis, J.S. (1989) The relationship between infrared, optical, and ultraviolet extinction, ApJ, 345, 245
Mathis, J.S. (1990), Interstellar dust and extinction, ARA&A, 28, 37
Schlegel, D.J., Finkbeiner, D.P., and Davis, M. (1998), Maps of Dust Infrared Emission for Use in Estimation of Reddening and Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation Foregrounds, ApJ, 500, 525
L19: Stellar Kinematics and Formation of the Milky Way [Oct 10]
GA Sections 10.3, 10.7
Eggen, O.J., Lynden-Bell, D., Sandage, A.R. (1962) Evidence from the motions of old stars that the Galaxy collapsed, ApJ, 136, 748
Searle, L. Zinn, R. (1978) Compositions of halo clusters and the formation of the galactic halo, ApJ, 225, 357
Olling, R. and Dehnen, W. (2003) The Oort Constants measured from Proper Motions, ApJ, 599, 275
Dehnen, W. and Binney, J.J. (1998) Local stellar kinematics from HIPPARCOS data, MNRAS, 298, 387
L20: Stellar Populations and Milky Way Structure [Oct 12]
GA Chapter 6
Belokurov, V. et al. (2006) The Field of Streams: Sagittarius and Its Siblings, ApJ, 642, L137
Ivezic, Z., Beers, T.C., and Juric, M. (2012) Galactic Stellar Populations in the Era of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and Other Large Surveys, ARA&A, 50, 251
L21: Galactic Chemistry [Oct 14]
GA Chapter 5
McWilliam, A. (1997) Abundance Ratios and Galactic Chemical Evolution, ARA&A, 35, 503
Dalcanton, J. (2007), The Metallicity of Galaxy Disks: Infall versus Outflow, ApJ, 658, 941

Part V. Galaxies

L22: Morphological Classification of Galaxies [Oct 19]
GA Section 4.1
Soifer, B.T., Helou, G., Werner, M. (2008), The Spitzer View of the Extragalactic Universe, ARA&A, 46, 201
Blanton, M.R. and Moustakas, J. (2009), Physical Properties and Environments of Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 47, 159
L23: Surface Photometry [Oct 21]
GA Section 4.1
L24: Galaxy Luminosity Function [Oct 24]
GA Section 4.1, 4.2
Blanton, M., et al. (2003) The Galaxy Luminosity Function and Luminosity Density at Redshift z = 0.1, ApJ, 592, 819
L25: Properties of Elliptical Galaxies [Oct 26]
GA Section 4.4
Blanton, M., and Moustakas, J. (2009) Physical Properties and Environments of Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 47, 159 (Sections 4, 5)
Dressler, A. et al. (1987) Spectroscopy and photometry of elliptical galaxies. I - A new distance estimator, ApJ, 313, 42
Djorgovski, S. and Davis, M. (1987) Fundamental properties of elliptical galaxies, ApJ, 313, 59
L26: Properties of Disk Galaxies [Oct 28]
GA Section 4.4
Blanton, M., and Moustakas, J. (2009) Physical Properties and Environments of Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 47, 159 (Section 3)
Kormendy, J., and Kennicutt, R. (2004) Secular Evolution and the Formation of Pseudobulges in Disk Galaxies, ARA&A, 42, 603
L27: Groups and Clusters [Oct 31]
GA Section 4.1
Blanton, M., and Moustakas, J. (2009) Physical Properties and Environments of Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 47, 159 (Sections 2.5, 2.6)
Bahcall, N. (1977) Clusters of galaxies, ARA&A, 15, 505
Dressler, A. (1980) Galaxy morphology in rich clusters - Implications for the formation and evolution of galaxies, ApJ, 236, 351
Voit, G. (2005) Tracing cosmic evolution with clusters of galaxies, RvMP, 77, 207
L28: The Local Group [Nov 2]
GA Section 4.1.4
Grebel, E.K., Gallagher, J.S. Harbeck, D. (2003), The Progenitors of Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies, AJ, 125, 1926
Mateo, M. (1998) Dwarf Galaxies of the Local Group, ARA&A, 36, 435
Karachentsev, I. et al.(2004) A Catalog of Neighboring Galaxies, AJ, 127, 2031
Simulation of The formation of the Milky Way's stellar halo
L29: ISM in Galaxies [Nov 4]
GA Chapter 8
Blanton, M., and Moustakas, J. (2009) Physical Properties and Environments of Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 47, 159 (Sections 3.4, 3.6, 5.8)
Young, J.S. and Scoville, N.Z. (1980) Molecular gas in galaxies, ARA&A, 29, 581
Bolatto, A.D., Wolfire, M., Leroy, A.K. (2013) The CO-to-H2 Conversion Factor, ARA&A, 51, 207
L30: Star Formation in Galaxies [Nov 7]
GA Section 8.2.8
Kennicutt, R.C. (1998) Star Formation in Galaxies Along the Hubble Sequence, ARA&A, 36, 189
Kennicutt, R.C. and Evans, N.J. (2012) Star Formation in the Milky Way and Nearby Galaxies, ARA&A, 50, 531 (Section ...)
Leroy, A.K. et al. (2013) Molecular gas and Star Formation in nearby Disk Galaxies, AJ, 146, 19
L31: Galaxy Evolution [Nov 8, 14]
Shapley, A.E. (2011), Physical Properties of Galaxies from z=2-4, ARA&A, 49, 525
Carilli, C.L. and Walter, F. (2013), Cool Gas in High-Redshift Galaxies, ARA&A, 51, 105
Madau, P. and Dickinson, M. (2014), Cosmic Star Formation History, ARA&A, 52, 415
Stark, D. (2016), Galaxies in the First Billion Years After the Big Bang, ARA&A, 54, 761

Part VI. Active Galactic Nuclei

L32: Basic AGN Taxonomy [Nov 16]
AGN Chapters 1 & 2
L33: Physical Processes in AGN [Nov 16]
AGN Chapters 1, 2, 4
Rees, M.J. (1984) Black Hole Models for Active Galactic Nuclei, ARA&A, 22, 471
L34: Eddington Limit and Black Hole Growth [Nov 18]
AGN Chapter 3
L35: Accretion Processes [Nov 21]
AGN Chapters 3,4
Shakura, N. I., Sunyaev, R. A. (1973) Black holes in binary systems. Observational appearance, A&A, 24, 337
Pringle, J.E. (1981) Accretion discs in astrophysics ARA&A, 19, 137
L36: Broad Line Region [Nov 28]
AGN Chapter 5
L37: Reverberation Mapping [Nov 28]
AGN Chapter 5
Peterson, B.M. (1993) Reverberation mapping of active galactic nuclei, PASP, 105, 247
Grier, C.J. et al. (2013), The Structure of the Broad-line Region in Active Galactic Nuclei. I. Reconstructed Velocity-delay Maps,, ApJ, 764, 47
L38: Narrow Line Region [Nov 30]
AGN Chapter 6
L39: Unification [Dec 2]
AGN Chapter 7
Netzer, H. (2015) Revisiting the Unified Model of Active Galactic Nuclei, ARA&A, 53 365
Kauffmann, G, & Haehnelt, M. (2000) A unified model for the evolution of galaxies and quasars, MNRAS, 311, 576
Hopkins, P.F., et al. (2006) A Unified, Merger-driven Model of the Origin of Starbursts, Quasars, the Cosmic X-Ray Background, Supermassive Black Holes, and Galaxy Spheroids, ApJS, 163, 1
L40: AGN Luminosity Function [Dec 5]
AGN Chapter 10, Section 11.2
Hopkins, P.F., et al. (2007) An Observational Determination of the Bolometric Quasar Luminosity Function, ApJ, 654, 731
Ueda, Y. et al. (2014), Toward the Standard Population Synthesis Model of the X-Ray Background: Evolution of X-Ray Luminosity and Absorption Functions of Active Galactic Nuclei Including Compton-thick Populations, ApJ, 786, 104
L41: Co-Evolution of Black Holes and Galaxies [Dec 7]
AGN Section 11.3
Ferrarese, L. & Merritt, D. (2000) A Fundamental Relation between Supermassive Black Holes and Their Host Galaxies, ApJ, 539, 9
Gebhardt, K. (2000) A Relationship between Nuclear Black Hole Mass and Galaxy Velocity Dispersion, ApJ, 539, 13
Martini (2004) QSO Lifetimes arXiv:astro-ph/0304009
Rosario, D.J. (2013), The mean star-forming properties of QSO host galaxies, AA, 560, 72
McConnell, N.J. and Ma, C.-P. (2013), Revisiting the Scaling Relations of Black Hole Masses and Host Galaxy Properties, ApJ, 764, 184
Kormendy, J. and Ho, L.C. (2013), Coevolution (Or Not) of Supermassive Black Holes and Host Galaxies, ARA&A, 51, 511
Heckman, T.M. and Best, P.N. (2014), The Coevolution of Galaxies and Supermassive Black Holes: Insights from Surveys of the Contemporary Universe, ARA&A, 52, 589

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