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Course Description: Stellar dynamics attempts to answer the following question: what happens when you have a large number of particles (stars) orbiting under the influence of their mutual gravity? This course will cover the dynamics of objects ranging from binary stars to globular clusters to galaxies. Particular emphasis will be placed on direct applications to observational data.

The syllabus provides a more detailed list of topics.

Textbook: The textbook for the course is the second edition of Galactic Dynamics by Binney & Tremaine (2008, Princeton University Press). Also recommended, but not required are Galactic Astronomy by Binney & Merrifield and Solar System Dynamics by Murray & Dermott. These are available in the Astronomy Library.

Evaluation: Grading will be divided as follows:

40%  Problem Sets
30%  Midterm exam in class
25%  Final Projects
Paper Discussions
Policies: Readings will be assigned and should be completed BEFORE each lecture. I will hand out my lecture notes at the start of each class.

Class meets Tues/Thurs 4 - 5:15pm
Professor Marla Geha

Home | Syllabus | Readings | Final Project | Problem Sets