Introduction to Astrophysics

Yale Course , Spring 2007 , Prof. Charles Bailyn

Lecture 1: Introduction

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Lecture Details :

Frontiers/Controversies in Astrophysics (ASTR 160)

Professor Bailyn introduces the course and discusses the course material and requirements. The three major topics that the course will cover are (1) exoplanets--planets around stars other than the Sun, (2) black holes--stars whose gravitational pull is so strong that even their own light rays cannot escape, and (3) cosmology--the study of the Universe as a whole. Class proper begins with a discussion on planetary orbits. A brief history of astronomy is also given and its major contributors over the centuries are introduced: Ptolemy, Galileo, Copernicus, Kepler, and Newton.

00:00 - Chapter 1. Introduction
05:38 - Chapter 2. Topics of the Course
12:57 - Chapter 3. Course Requirements
21:03 - Chapter 4. Planetary Orbits
31:32 - Chapter 5. From Newton's Laws of Motion to the Theory of Everything
38:10 - Chapter 6. The Newtonian Modification of Kepler's Third Law

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses

This course was recorded in Spring 2007.

Course Description :

Planetary Orbits - Our Solar System and the Pluto Problem - Discovering Exoplanets: Hot Jupiters - Planetary Transits - Microlensing, Astrometry and Other Methods - Direct Imaging of Exoplanets - Introduction to Black Holes - Special and General Relativity - Tests of Relativity - Special and General Relativity - Stellar Mass Black Holes - Pulsars - Supermassive Black Holes - Hubbles Law and the Big Bang - Omega and the End of the Universe - Dark Matter - Dark Energy and the Accelerating Universe and the Big Rip - Supernovae - Other Constraints: The Cosmic Microwave Background - The Multiverse and Theories of Everything

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