Ay 124 -- Winter Term 2015-16
Structure and Dynamics of Galaxies
Instructor: Chuck Steidel (252 Cahill, x-4168).
Office Hours: drop by any time, or make appt. by e-mail
The TA for the class is Denise Schmitz (357 Cahill, x-4519)
Denise's office hours are TBD.
The class meets Weds. and Fri., 1-2:30pm, in 219 Cahill
Note: there will be no class on Weds., March 9- instead, we will meet on Friday, March 11, at
the normal class time (1:00pm) to hear talks from each of you. We will end that day when
we finish, circa 3pm.
Grading will be based on a combination of homework sets (50%) and
a research project (50%) consisting of a written 5-10 page paper
and a 10-minute presentation to your classmates during the last week of classes. The paper will
be due on Sunday, March 6 by midnight p.m., so please plan ahead to set aside time to work on it.
There will be 5 problem sets during the term.
Assignments will generally be due Fridays at 5pm, turned into Steidel's mailbox in 249 Cahill, except by prior arrangement
with the instructor and the TA.
On the homeworks, you may discuss the problems with your classmates, but each student is expected
to write her/his solutions independently.
- Homework #1 , available 6 January 2016, due 15 January 2016
- Homework #2 , available 21 January 2016, due 29 January 2016
- Homework #3 , available 29 January 2016, due 5 February 2016
- Homework #4 , available 10 February 2016, due 24 February 2016
- Homework #5 , available 24 February 2016, due 4 March 2016 ps5 data
Notes and Supplemental Materials
There is no single text book that covers all of the topics for Ay124 at an appropriate level.
Each week has associated with it some recommended reading in three textbooks: "Galactic Astronomy",
by Binney and Merrifield (1998), "Galactic Dynamics", by Binney and Tremaine (2nd edition, 2008), and
"Galaxy Formation and Evolution", by Mo, van den Bosch, and White (2011). Note that the Mo et al
textbook will prove useful for Ay127 as well! All 3 books are on reserve in the Cahill library,
but you may want to consider buying one or more of them as a reference (e.g., the Mo, van den Bosch, and White
book is both fairly current and covers a lot of useful ground across many areas of astrophysics).
For some topics, links to papers or review articles will be provided for background reading.
Here are some links to papers of relevance to topics covered in class; reading
or at least perusing them is recommended:
The Formation of the Milky Way Eggen, Lynden-Bell,
and Sandage 1962
Composition of Halo Clusters and the Formation of the Galactic Halo
Searle and Zinn 1978
The Galactic Bulge: A Review (Minniti and Zoccali 2008) IAU 245
Galactic Stellar Populations in the Era of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey and Other Large Surveys (Ivezic et al 2012) ARAA review
A Universal Stellar Initial Mass Function? A Critical Look at Variations (Bastian et al 2011) ARAA review
Chabrier's 2003 review on Initial Mass Function Chabrier 2003
Galaxy Disks (van der Kruit et al 2011) ARAA review
Gaseous Galaxy Halos (Putman et al 2012) ARAA review
Star Formation in Galaxies Along the Hubble Sequence (Kennicutt 1998) ARAA review
Star Formation in the Milky Way and Nearby Galaxies (Kennicutt & Evans 2012) ARAA review
Structure and Dynamics of Elliptical Galaxies (de Zeeuw 2001) ARAA review
Elliptical Galaxy Dynamics (Merritt 1998) review
The internal Dynamics of Globular Clusters (Meylan et al 1999)
Dynamics of Interacting Galaxies Barnes and Hernquist
Gasdynamics and Starbursts in Major Mergers Mihos
and Hernquist 1996
Luminous IR Galaxies Sanders and Mirabel 1996 ARAA
Questions? Contact via email, make an appointment with
Last updated January 6, 2016