Galaxies and the Universe
- Class and Office Hours: This class, Astro 358 (Unique 48195), meets Tuesday and Thursdays from 9.30 to 11.00 am in RLM 15.216B. The instructor is Professor Shardha Jogee and the teaching assistant (TA) is Ben Holder. Please consult us during the office hours listed below if you have any questions and we will be glad to help.
Prof. Shardha Jogee
Tu Th 5-6 pm or by appointment
Wed 5 to 6 pm or by appointment
- Course Description: Astronomy 358, "Galaxies and the Universe," is an upper division course designed for majors in the physical sciences. It addresses the properties, contents, origin, and evolution of galaxies; their interaction and mass assembly history; the properties of their central black holes and starbursts; and the characteristics of the early Universe. The emphasis will be on using the laws of physics to interpret observations and understand how galaxies form and evolve. This field is fast-moving and I will discuss some of the latest cutting-edge galaxy surveys conducted with NASA's Great Observatories (Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Infrared Satellite, Chandra X-ray Observatory), such as the GEMS (Galaxy Evolution from Morphology and SEDs) survey, the GOODS (Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey) survey, and the HUDF (Hubble Ultra Deep Field). These surveys allow us to probe the evolution of galaxies over a wide range of cosmic lookback times, from the present-day out to epochs when the Universe was less than 5% of its present age.
Two semesters of college physics (Phy 301 and 316, or equivalent). A previous astronomy course, such as Ast 352K or Ast 307, is helpful but not required. Please make sure to read the Memo to Undergraduate Astronomy Students regarding Astronomy Courses
The primary course textbook is "Galaxies in the Universe: An Introduction", by Linda Sparke and John Gallagher (Publisher: Cambridge University Press, copyright 2000), available in paperback. For additional reading, I have put the book "Galactic Astronomy", by Binney and Merrifield (Publisher: Princeton University Press, copyright 1998) on reserve in the PMA library (RLM, 4th floor) and in the Peridier Library (RLM 15.202). However, note that the course will be primarily based on the lectures where I will cover extra material not present in the textbook, and use simulations or animations to clarify new concepts. There will also be extra handouts and reading material that will be posted on this website as the class proceeds.
- Textbook and Reading:
The course calendar provides an approximate timeline of the topics to be covered in class. This calendar will be regularly updated as needed, so make sure to consult the online version each week.
Your grades will be posted online on eGradebook. I strongly recommend that you attend classes as assignments are primarily based on the lectures and your in-class participation count directly toward your final grade. The final grade will consist of
- Course Grade:
25% HomeworksWhen converting your final numerical grades to letter grades, I will use the scheme below or one that is slightly more lenient:
20% Midterm exam
20% End-of-term exam
20% In-class activities (after dropping the lowest score) and class participation
15% Research paper
A= 85% to 100%
B= 75% to 84%
C= 65% to 74%
D= 50% to 64%
F= 0% to 49%
(1) There will be about 4-5 homeworks. Late homeworks will be accepted only if you have been granted an extension prior to the due date and will receive only partial credit; (2) There will be no final comprehensive exam; (3) There will be makeup exams only for students having a valid excuse and an official note from UT for the specific date and time of the missed exam. Makeup exams may be based on any part of the course; (4) The lowest in-class activity score will be dropped, and the remaining scores will make up 20% of the final grade; (5) We will accept requests for correction or re-grade of an assignment (homework, exam or quiz), at latest two weeks after it is handed back to you or posted on eGradebook; (6) You are encouraged to study with other students, but you must write up your own homework, exams, and quizzes. Cheating will be severely punished: if you copy someone's homework/quiz/exam or let someone copy yours, both of you will receive zero credit, and I will consider filing a report to the Dean of Students.
- Class Policies:
You will be required to read the literature on a certain topic and write your conclusions in a 10-15 page (single spacing) paper. I will provide a list of possible topics and a list of papers for each topic. If you would like to choose a different topic, please feel free to do so, but talk to me first. The paper will be due on the last day of class.
- Research Paper:
- Final grades are on eGradebook. and have been submitted to CNS. Well done! The final grade distribution was ~51% =A, 27%=B, 22%=C. We gave up to 5% bonus for class attendance. Please pick your assignements and research papers outside of Ben Holder's office. (RLM 7.206; (512) 471-7253). I was pleased with the level of many of the research papers,and I hope you learnt a lot while writing them. I enjoyed teaching this class, and I hope it has left you with an appreciation of the evolution of galaxies over cosmological times of 13 Gyr, and brought home how imcomplete our understanding still is. Have a good summer!
- NED (NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database) (with links to images and catalogs, such as RC3, ESO, UGC)
- Notes on how to convert coded revised Hubble types in RC3 (Last update = Feb 10/2006)
- Orignal table from RC2 on how to convert coded revised Hubble types in RC3
- Atlas of Peculiar Galaxies (Halton Arp, 1966; Images and data on 338 peculiar galaxies).
You will find below, mostly in pdf format, selected parts of the lecture, such as figures and plots. The main notes, explanations, and demos will be covered only in class where in-class quiz/activities will count toward 20% of the final grade.
- Figures from Lec 2 (Th Jan 19/2006)
- Figures from Lec 9+10 (Tu Feb 14/2006 + Th Feb 16/2006)
- Correction to lecture of Feb 14. The formula for bulge to total luminosity (B/T) is:
(B/T) = I_e (R_e)^2 /[I_e (R_e)^2 + 0.28 I_o (R_s)^2]
- Special Lecture on Bars: Lec 15 to 16 (Tu Mar 07/2006 + Th Mar 09/2006)
- Guest Lectures by Dr Fabio Barazza (Tue Mar 21, 2006), Dr Juntai Shen (Th Mar 23, 2006), and Dr Sheila Kannappan (Th Mar 30, 2006)
- Figures from Lec 20 + 21 (Tu Apr 4/2006 + Th Apr 6/2006)
- Figures from Lec 22 + 23 (Tu Apr 11/2006 + Th Apr 13/2006)
- Figures from Lec 24 + 25 (Tu Apr 18/2006 + Th Apr 20/2006)
- Figures from Lec 26 + 27 (Tu Apr 25/2006 + Th Apr 27/2006)
- Figures from Lec 28 (Tu May 2 2006)