Theoretical astrophysics 1-4

Type of instruction




Part of degree program


Recommended in

Semesters 1-4

Typically offered in

Autumn/Spring semester

Course description

Semester 1: Physical foundaions

Thermodynamics: ideal gas, parial ionisaion, Saha equaion. Degeneraion of mater. Nuclear reacions. Basics of luid mechanics and magnetohydrodynamics. Linear perturbaions, waves in homogeneous media, perturbaions in straiied media. Turbulence and convecion. Radiaive transfer equaion

Semester 2: Stellar structure and evoluion

Applicaion of luid mechanics to stars. Thermodynamics of stellar plasma. Radiaive and convecive transfer of energy. Simpliied models, polytropic spheres. Numerical methods in the modelling of steallr structure and evoluion. Stability of stars: theory of linear pulsaion. Basics of numerical modelling of nonlinear pulsaions. Introducion to asteroseismology. Stellar evoluion: energy producion and nucleosynthesis. Phases of stellar evoluion.

Semester 3: Radiaive transfer

Saha equaion, Fowler-Milne theory of stellar spectra. Radiaive equilibrium in stellar atmospheres. Transfer equaion. Limb darkening. Theory of Fraunhofer lines. Mechanisms of absorpion, damping, Doppler broadining. Theory of the growth curve, determinaion of stellar composiion. Nontehrmal radiaion processes: synchrotron radiaion, nonthermal bremsstrahlung, comptonisaion.

Semester 4: Difuse matter

Radiative transfer and raditaive processes in difuse media. Interstellar molecules. The luid dynamics of difuse mater, shock waves. Interstellar dust and gas. Interstellar magneic ields. Interstellar medium in the Milky Way Galaxy. Star formaion. Planetary nebulae and supernove remnants.

  • Kippenhahn & Weigert: Stellar structure and evoluion. 2nd ed., Springer, 2012, ISBN 978-3-642-30304-3
  • Rybicki & Lightman: Radiaive processes in astrophysics. Wiley, 1986, ISBN 0-471-82759-2
  • Choudhuri: The physics of luids and plasmas.Cambridge UP, 1998, ISBN 978-0521555432
  • Dopita & Sutherland: Astrophysics of the difuse universe. Springer, 2003, ISBN 978-3-662-05866-4