Astronomy 2

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
Relying on the notions introduced in the course Astronomy I, this course
has the objective of providing the students with an overview of galactic
and extragalactic astrophysics, as well as of the main observationa
techniques used across the electromagnetic spectrum for ground and space
observations. An introduction is provided to the physical properties of
the interstellar medium, the dynamics of stellar clusters and of the
Milky Way, the properties of external galaxies, active galaxies and
galaxy clusters, as well as of the basics of big bang cosmology. At the
end the course comes back to the smaller scale of our Solar System, and
provides an updated discussion of extrasolar planets and their
implications for astrobiology.
Expected learning outcomes
Students at the end of the course are expected to reach the following
1. to be able to discuss the main characteristics of the instrumentation
adopted for astrophysical measurements across the electromagnetic
spectrum, from radio to gamma rays
2. to gain familiarity with different types of stellar clusters, their
dynamic, the information that can be extracted from an HR diagram
3. to be able to use the notions of interstellar extintion in distance
measurements, as well as to discuss the fundamental properties of the
gas and dust components of the interstellar medium
4. to be able to discuss the structure of our own Galaxy, its
diferential rotation, the evidence for a supermassive black hole at its
centre, the evidence of dark matter in the Galactic halo
5. to be able to classity galaxy, discuss star formation, as well as the
presence of dark matter form rotation curves, the nature and properties
of active agalactic nuclei
6. to be ale to discuss the physics of galaxy clusters, the evidence of
intracluster hot gas from X-ray observations
7. to acquire an initial vision of cosmology in the expanding universe,
including the basics of large scale distribution of matter and of cosmic
microwave background observations
8. to be able to discuss the main properties of our Solar System,
including the Earth-Moon system, terrestrial and giant planets, icy objects
9. to gain awareness of the current frontiers in the study of extrasolar
planets, including the data available on planets mass, density,
eccentricity, distance from central star, as well as of the implications
for potential life-supporting physical conditions
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
Second semester
FIS/05 - ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS - University credits: 6
Lessons: 42 hours
Ask the teacher
Laboratorio di Strumentazione Spaziale, Department of physics (via Celoria 16, Milano)