UBC logo
  ASTR 200, Sep-Dec 2017

ASTR 200 , Frontiers of Astrophysics

This web page concerns ASTR 200 for the period : September - December 2017.


Professor Brett Gladman : My home page
Tel: (604) 822-6244
Room 300B, Hennings (Physics and Astronomy) Building


LOCATION: MWF, 12:00 - 13:00, Hennings 202

AIM: This course is an introduction to astrophysics. In it we will look at a broad range of astronomical topics ranging from the Solar System to the most distant galaxies, and learn how astronomical phenomena are governed by physical laws and principles.
The main goals of the course are to:
- provide an overview of the Universe and its constituents, including stars, planets, galaxies, white dwarfs, neutron stars, supernovae, dark matter and black holes.
- improve your understanding of physical processes in astronomy.
- help you develop skills at applying physics and math to solve abstract and practical problems

Note: This course also serves as an introduction for ASTR 205 (Stars and Stellar Populations) which is offered in term two, and uses the same text book.

LEVEL: Second year undergraduate. No prior astronomy knowledge assumed; see UBC calendar entry for PHYS and MATH pre-reqs.
TEXTBOOK (Required): - Foundations of Astrophysics (Ryden and Peterson)
HOURS PER WEEK: Three hours of classroom instruction per week.

Office Hours

You may ALWAYS email us to obtain a time for a private meeting.

Prof Gladman, Henn 300B. gladman@astro.ubc.ca
  - Mondays 2:00-3:00 .
  - Thursdays 2:30-3:30 .

Ryley Hill, Henn 312. ryleyhill@phas.ubc.ca
  - Thursday 9:30-10:30. Nov 9.
Edward Ashton, Henn 312. eashton@phas.ubc.ca
  - Wednesday 3:30-4:30. Nov 8

Lecture Slides (not for all lectures)

Sept 6 : Lecture 1 for ASTR 200. PDF format.

Sept 8. Pre-readings for Friday Sept 8: Sec 2.1 and 2.2; refer to Fig 1.7 when needed,
but also look at THIS FIGURE to see the path of Mars in 2018.
  Lecture 2 for ASTR 200. PDF format.       HOMEWORK 1 assigned, Due Sept 14, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Sept 11. Pre-readings for Monday Sept 11: Sec 2.3 and pp 58-59 on stellar parallax
  Lecture 3 for ASTR 200. PDF format.

Sept 13. Pre-readings for Wednesday Sept 13: Secs 2.4 and Sec 2.5, pp 61-63
  Lecture 4 on Keplerian motion. No notes. On blackboard.

Sept 15. Readings for Friday Sept 15: pp 68-71 and Eq (3.42), Sec 3.3
  Lecture 5 on Astrodynamics. No notes. On blackboard.       HOMEWORK 2 assigned, Due Sept 21, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Sept 18. Readings for Monday Sept 18: None.
  Lecture 6 for ASTR 200. PDF format.

Sept 20. Readings for Wednesday Sept 20: Read pg 143 and look at Figs 5.14 and 5.15. Pp 194-197.
  Lecture 7. No notes; on board. Thermal radiation and planetary energy balance.

Sept 22. Readings for Friday Sept 22: Sects 5.0 and 5.1. Colour Figs 2 and 3 (plates in center of book)
  Lecture 8. Spectra and Atomic Structure . PDF file       HOMEWORK 3 assigned, Due Sept 28, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Sept 25. Readings for Monday Sept 25: pp. 228-230, on radioactive decay. Also: page 286 on meteorites.
  Lecture 9. Meteorites and radioactive dating. PDF file

Sept 27. Readings for Wednesday Sept 27: Pp 393-394 (ending 1 sentence after Eq 17.6), 397-398.
  Lecture 10. Star formation. PDF file

Sept 29. Readings for Friday Sept 29: Sections 8.3, 12.1 and 12.2.
  Lecture 11. Protoplanetary disks. PDF file       HOMEWORK 4 assigned, Due Oct 5, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Oct 2. Readings for Monday Oct 2: Text does not discuss this topic. See the lecture.
  Lecture 12. Condenstation in protoplanetary disks.

Oct 4. Readings for Wednesday Oct 4: Page 296(start 2nd paragraph)-298, Page 326.
  Lecture 13. The Doppler effect and binary motion.

Oct 6. Readings for Friday Oct 6: Pages 325-329 (to end of 13.5.2)
  Lecture 14. Radial velocity science. PDF file

Oct 9. Thanksgiving. No lecture

Oct 11. Readings for Wednesday Oct 11: Pages 300-303
  Lecture 15. Exoplanets, direct imaging and transits. PDF file

Oct 13. Readings for Friday Oct 13: Pages 300-303
  Lecture 16. Exoplanets, The variety of systems. PDF file

- - - - - - Midterm Material ends here - - - - - -

Monday Oct 16. Sections 13.1, pp. 309+310
  Lecture 17. Introduction to Stars. PDF file

Wednesday Oct 18. Midterm examination, in class. Midterm, 2017 PDF format
The percentage grade for the exam is obtained by dividing your raw score by 66.

Friday Oct 20. Section 14.4, omitting final paragraph containing Eq (14.28)
  Lecture 18. Ensemble properties of stars. PDF file

Monday Oct 23. Sect 9.2, starting 3rd paragraph pg 213 to end of paragraph with (9.8)
Sect 10.2.1 , to end of Page 246. Sect 18.1
  Lecture 19. Equilibrium, and White Dwarves. PDF file

Oct 25. Reading for Wed Oct 25, Sect 18.1
  Lecture 20. Neutron stars. PDF file

Oct 27. Reading for Fri Oct 27, Sect 18.3
  Lecture 21. Stellar mass black holes. PDF file

Oct 30. Readings for Monday Oct 30 Sections 19.1, 19.2 to end page 442.
  Lecture 22. Our Galaxy. PDF file

Nov 1. Readings for Wed Nov 1, Page 443.
  Lecture 23. Dark matter in our galaxy. PDF file

Nov 3. Readings for Friday Nov 3, pages 467-473.
  Lecture 24. Other Galaxies. PDF file
      HOMEWORK 7 assigned, Due Thursday Nov 9, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Nov 6. Readings for Monday Nov 6, Sections 22.1, 22.2
  Lecture 25. Galaxies, interactions and cluster dynamics. PDF file

Nov 8. Readings for Wed Nov 8, No text readings
  Lecture 26. Gravitational Lensing. PDF file

Nov 10. Readings for Fri Nov 10, Sect 20.4, 20.5, skipping Eq 20.28 and 20.29
  Lecture 27. The Hubble diagram, expansion. PDF file       HOMEWORK 8 assigned, Due Thursday Nov 16, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Nov 13. Holiday in lieu of REMEMBRANCE DAY. No class.

Nov 15. Readings for Wed Nov 15, Sect 22.1, 22.2
  Lecture 28. Supermassive Black Holes, Active Galactic Nuclei. PDF file

Nov 17. Readings for Friday Nov 27 Sections 23.3, 23.4
  Lecture 29. Geometry of the Universe. PDF file       HOMEWORK 9 assigned, Due Thursday Nov 23, 5 PM. Available at bottom of this page.

Nov 20. Readings for Monday Nov 20 Section 23.5
Dynamics of the expansion. No electronic notes; done on blackboard.

Homework Guidelines, for ASTR 200

- You may work with other students when figuring out how to approach/solve the problems, but you will then INDEPENDENTLY write up your exposition of the solution for each problem.

- The clarity and logic and quality of explanation of your solution is part of the grade. Handing in confusing and/or rough work will result in full marks not being awarded. The graders have the authority to decide if a proposed solution to a problem does not sufficiently explain how and why an answer has been reached.

Due Sept 14, 5 PM (see top of homework page for instruction). Homework 1 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 2. PDF format.
Due Sept 21, 5 PM (see top of homework page for instruction). Homework 2 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 3. PDF format. See email for information about Julian Days for Q2.
Due Sept 28, 5 PM. Homework 3 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 4. PDF format.
Due Thursday Oct 5, 5 PM Homework 4 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 5. PDF format. Due Thursday Oct 12, 5 PM. No late assignments after 4 PM Fri Oct 13.
This is the last homework before the midterm examination. Solutions will be posted by 5 PM Friday Oct 13.
      Optional, but recommended, Graph Paper Sheet. PDF format.
Homework 5 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 6. PDF format. Due Friday Nov 3, 4 PM.
CLARIFICATION: FOUR clarifications issued by broadcast email.
Homework 6 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 7. PDF format. Due Thurs Nov 9, 5 PM.
Homework 7 Solutions. PDF format.

Homework 8. PDF format. Due Thurs Nov 16, 5 PM.

Homework 9. PDF format. Due Thurs Nov 23, 5 PM.


The ASTR 200 midterm exam will be in the class slot for Wednesday October 18 2017, noon-12:50,

Below you can find the 2016 midterm exam, with solutions, and formula sheet handed out with the exam. The 2017 format will be similar. Not all content covered in 2016 will be covered in 2017.
Midterm, 2016. PDF format, with solutions.
2016 Midterm Formula Sheet. PDF format.