Solar System Astronomy

Solar System Astronomy
Solar-system dynamics, planetary surfaces and atmospheres. Analysis of stellar data from telescopes, spectrometers and photometers. Interaction of light with atoms and molecules. Extrasolar planets.
 Hours3.0 Credit, 3.0 Lecture, 0.0 Lab
 PrerequisitesPHSCS 121; Math 112 or equivalent; Phscs 127 or concurrent.
 ProgramsContaining PHSCS 227
Course Outcomes

Celestial Mechanics and the Nature of Light

Students will be able to solve elementary problems in classical celestial mechanics and in the interaction of light with atoms and molecules. Mastery will be measured through the use of homework and exam problems.

The Solar System

Students will be able to describe the differences between the planets and the moons and how these differences provide clues as to their formation history. Mastery of this knowledge will be determined through short answer essay questions on exams and preclass questions.

Scientific Writing

Students will be taught how to search astronomy publications to gather information on a given topic and present their findings in the form of a scientific paper with proper acknowledgement. Progress will be monitored through regular meetings with the instructor who will determine at each interview the student's progress and provide appropriate guidance. Students will be given a rubric to guide them in the writing of the paper, and the rubric will be used to grade the final paper

Research Opportunities

Students will write an ORCA or Internship application specific to their area of study. This will introduce them to research opportunities. Students will be guided throughout the process. Applications will be graded by the professor for completeness and the student may submit the application to the appropriate funding agency if they choose, but this is not required.