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  ASTR 502, Jan-April 2013

ASTR 502 - 201 , Astronomical Dynamics


Professor Brett Gladman
Tel: (604) 822-6244
Room 330A, Hennings (Physics and Astronomy) Building

Dept. of Physics and Astronomy
University of British Columbia
6224 Agricultural Road
Vancouver, BC
V6T 1Z1


WILL NEXT BE TAUGHT: January - April 2017.
LOCATION: Tues+Thurs, 11:00 - 12:30, Hennings 302

AIM: A course in point-mass gravitational dynamics in the context of the Solar System, stellar, galactic, and extragalactic environments.

LEVEL: First year graduate (see prereqs below)
or 4th year honours with the permission of the instructor.

- Solar System Dynamics (Burns and Gladman, chapters provided free of charge)
- Galactic Dynamics. Binney and Tremaine (Princeton University Press). MUST BE 2ND EDITON

Other potentially-useful references (not required):
- Galactic Astronomy. Binney and Merrifield (Princeton University Press)
- Solar System Dynamics. Dermott and Murray.

- Undergraduate classical mechanics at honours physics level. You should have seen Hamilton's equations of motion.
- Differential equations at honours physics level (PDEs).
- Elementary knowledge of a scientific programming language. Some numerical exploration will be required.

HOURS PER WEEK: Three hours of meetings per week on average.

3 CREDITS : Coursework will consist of assigned readings, discussion, assignments as well as midterm and final examimations.

Course Topics

- Overview of solar system structure
- The 2-body problem
- The restricted 3-body problem
- Numerical techniques
- The N-body problem and dynamical chaos
- Resonances, perturbation equations
- The stability of the solar system
- Extrasolar Planets
  * The level of the above topics is as covered in the commonly available:
  Orbital Motion, 3rd Edition.  A.E. Roy  
  Fundmentals of Celestial Mechanics, J.M.A. Danby
  Solar System Dynamics, C.D. Murray and S.F. Dermott

  * The remaining topics are on the scope of the coverage of that topic in:
  Galactic Dynamics, 2nd edition.  J. Binney and S. Tremaine
     Most of the material is in Chapters 1-3, 7 and 8

- The structure of the galaxy
- Galactic kinematics
- Evidence for dark matter
- Dynamical friction
- Dynamics of star clusters

- Galactic potentials and orbits
- Dynamics of clusters of galaxies
- Environmental effects

Reading Log

Date	Readings to be done BEFORE THAT CLASS.
Jan 03	1st class; no readings.      HW1 assigned, due Jan 10.
Jan 05  Secs 2.1 and 2.2
Jan 10  Secs 2.3 -- 2.7 inclusive.   HW2 assigned, due Jan 17
Jan 12  Secs 2.8 -- 2.10 inclusive.
Jan 17  No readings due for Jan 17
Jan 19  Secs 3.1 -- 3.4 inclusive.   HW3 assigned. due Jan 24
Jan 24  Secs 3.6 and 3.7.            HW4 assigned, due Jan 31
Jan 26  pp. 119-126. Secs 4.2,4.3 

-- non scheduled readings
Section 5.1 and 5.2 (pp. 142-152)
Section 6.1, 6.3, 6.4, 6.5
Section 7.1-7.3
Chapter 8 up to and including 8.8
Chapter 9's pp. 287-299