Minors

Minor in Astronomy

Astronomy Minor Requirements

The following courses are required for the Astronomy Minor:

01:750:203-204 (or any other equivalent physics sequence)
01:750:205-206 (or 229-230 or 275-276)
01:750:341-342 and two courses from the astro labs (345,346) and upper level astro courses (441,442,443,444)

The grade-point average for all courses applied toward the minor must be at least 2.0. No more than one D may be applied toward the minor. Three of the four 300-level courses must be taken at Rutgers- New Brunswick. Physics majors or minors who also wish to minor in astronomy must complete 01:750:341-342 and two courses from the astro labs (345,346) and upper level astro courses (441,442,443,444). These courses may not also be used to satisfy requirements for the major or minor in physics.

Course Descriptions

Descriptions of the ASTROPHYSICS courses required for the major are given below. For a description of the PHYSICS courses that are required for the Astrophysics Major, see http://www.physics.rutgers.edu/ugrad/ug-courses.html.

Some of the courses listed below have home pages on the Web. Links to these pages can be found at http://www.physics.rutgers.edu/homes-ugcourses.shtml.

01:750:203-204. GENERAL PHYSICS (3,3)

Lec. 2 hrs., rec. 1 hr. Corequisites: 01:750:205-206 and any calculus course. Primarily for students in scientific curricula other than physics.

Elementary but detailed analysis of fundamental topics; motion, gravitation, momentum, energy, electromagnetism, waves, heat, kinetic theory, quantum effects, atomic and nuclear structure.

 

01:750:205-206. GENERAL PHYSICS LABORATORY (1,1)

Corequisites: 01:750:203-204.

Laboratory to complement 01:750:203-204.

 

01:750:229-230. ANALYTICAL PHYSICS II LABORATORY (1,1)

Corequisites: 01:750:227 and 228.

Laboratory to complement 01:750:227 and 228.

 

01:750:275-276. CLASSICAL PHYSICS LABORATORY (1,1)

Prerequisite: Enrollment in an honors program or permission of the department.
For physics majors and honors students.

Experiments in classical physics.

 

01:750:341,342. PRINCIPLES OF ASTROPHYSICS (3,3)

Prerequisites: Two terms of introductory physics and two terms of calculus. 

Properties and processes of the solar system, the stars, and the galaxies; origin of the elements; evolution of the stars and the universe; neutron stars and black holes.

 

01:750:345. COMPUTATIONAL ASTROPHYSICS (3)

Lec. 1.5 hrs., lab. 3 hrs. Prerequisites: 01:750:341,342 or permission of instructor. Lab schedule will vary through the semester. 

Introduction to computational astrophysics, including key algorithms, their implementation in code, and their application to current research in astrophysics. Extended projects feature analysis of real data and simulations.

 

01:750:346. OBSERVATIONAL ASTRONOMY (3)

Lec. 1.5 hrs., lab. 3 hrs. Prerequisites: 01:750:341,342 or permission of instructor. Students must have nighttime hours free for observing. 

Introduction to the tools and techniques of observational astronomy across the electromagnetic spectrum, and to their application in the context of current research in astrophysics. Extended projects offer each student an opportunity to work with astronomical data from at least two wavelength regimes (among radio, optical/infrared, and X-ray), and in the two core modes of astronomical observations (imaging and spectroscopy).

 

 

01:750:441. STARS AND STAR FORMATION (3)

Prerequisites: 01:750:361, 385-386. 

Observed properties of stars. Internal structure of stars, energy generation and transport, neutrinos, solar oscillations. Evolution of isolated and double stars, red giants, white dwarfs, variable stars, supernovae. Challenges presented by formation of stars, importance of magnetic fields. Pre-main sequence stellar evolution.

 

01:750:442. HIGH ENERGY ASTROPHYSICS AND RADIATIVE PROCESSES (3)

Prerequisites: 01:750:361, 385-386. 

Radiation and scattering processes in plasma. Detection and X- and gamma-rays. Supernovae and remnants, pulsars. Gamma-ray bursts. Accretion disks and binary star outbursts. Quasars and active galactic nuclei. Cosmic rays.

 

01:750:443. GALAXIES AND THE MILKY WAY (3)

Prerequisites: 01:750:381-382, 385-386. 

Properties of galaxies: photometry, kinematics and masses. Disk galaxies: spiral patterns, bars and warps, gas content, star formation rates, chemical evolution. Elliptical galaxies: shapes. Structure of the Milky Way. Nature of dark matter.

 

01:750:444. INTRODUCTION TO COSMOLOGY (3)

Prerequisites: 01:750:361, 385-386. 

Expansion of the universe, techniques for distance estimation. Large-scale structure of universe. Cosmological models: open, closed, flat and accelerating universes. Microwave background: observations, properties and origin. Problems of standard cosmology and preliminary concept of inflation.

 

01:750:497,498. HONORS IN ASTRONOMY (1-4,1-4)

Prerequisite: Invitation of chairperson. 

Supervised independent research or reading in astronomy, culminating in a seminar conducted by the student.