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January 2013

AST3Y03 is available for credit to Level III and IV students enrolled in physics-related programs, or with permission of the instructor.


Dr. W.E.Harris


x 22744


Textbook: Astrophysics in a Nutshell, by Dan Maoz (Princeton University Press, 2007) Marking scheme: 40% Final exam 20% One mid-term test 40% Term work including written assignments and project
The project will involve selection of a single topic closely related to the themes of the course. You will work in pairs, develop a class presentation, lead discussion on it, and prepare a 3-page summary of your project.

Part 1: Stars as physical objects. Observed properties of stars including luminosity, temperature, mass, distance, and the Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram. Setting up the vocabulary for the rest of the course. Part II: Stellar structure. - Basic principles including dynamical timescales, virial theorem. - Physical quantities inside a star. The star as an equilibrium mechanical, thermal, and nuclear system. The pressure integral. - Equations of stellar structure: hydrostatic equilibrium, mass conservation, equation of state - Nuclear fusion, luminosity, energy transport - Simple stellar models and polytropes. Structure along the main sequence. - Very high density conditions: electron degeneracy and changes to the equation of state Part III: Stellar evolution. - Evolutionary tracks on the HR diagram, and internal changes in the star. More nuclear physics - Advanced stages of evolution - End stages including white dwarfs, neutron stars, black holes - Basic ideas in star formation. McMaster Senate requires the following statement on academic integrity to be included in every course outline:
Academic dishonesty consists of misrepresentation by deception or by other fraudulent means and can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university. It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various kinds of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, specifically Appendix 3, located at http://www.mcmaster.ca/senate/academic/ac_integrity.htm The following illustrates only four forms of academic dishonesty: 1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not ones own, or work for which other credit has been obtained through another course. 2. Improper collaboration in group work. 3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations. 4. Failing to give appropriate credit or acknowledgement to other peoples work in project presentations or on written assignments and submissions.