Introduction to Astronomy

( 13 )
170 pages
This book provides a comprehensive tour of astronomy at an introductory level. Observational facts are balanced against the physics behind, where discussions are kept at a fundamental level.
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Об авторе

Dr. Kjær is a Danish national, who has been passionate about science since childhood. In 2001 she obtained a Bachelor degree in Science and in 2003 a Master degree in Astronomy from the University of Copenhagen. During these studies she worked as a research assistant and participated in observing run


This book is aimed at first year university students. The comprehensive tour through astronomy stretches from the solar system to the stars, which are followed from infancy to their spectacular supernovae ends. Observational facts are balanced against the understanding of the physics behind, where the discussions of physics are kept at a fundamental level. The astronomer’s basic tools and challenges are briefly described, familiarising the reader with the terminology of this science.

  1. The Earth-Moon System
    1. The Night Sky
    2. The Earth’s Seasons
    3. Phases of the Moon
    4. Solar and Lunar Eclipses
    5. Basic Celestial Mechanics
  2. The Solar System
    1. Formation of the Solar System
    2. Composition of the Solar System
    3. Definition of a Planet
    4. Dwarf Planets
    5. Small Solar System Bodies
  3. The Terrestrial Planets
    1. Mercury
    2. Venus
    3. Earth
    4. Mars
    5. Summary of the Terrestrial Planets
  4. The Jovian Planets
    1. Jupiter
    2. Saturn
    3. Uranus
    4. Neptune
    5. Summary of the Jovian Planets
  5. The Physics of Light
    1. Thermal Radiation
    2. Quantum definition of light
    3. Spectral Lines
    4. Other Causes for Emission
    5. Analysing the Light
  6. The Sun
    1. Energy Production in the Sun
    2. The Structure of the Sun
    3. The Active Sun
  7. Observational Astronomy
    1. Stellar Positions on the Sky
    2. The Magnitude System
    3. Flux and Luminosity
    4. Distance Measurement
    5. Practical Astronomy
  8. Stellar Evolution
    1. The Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram
    2. Protostars
    3. Main Sequence Stars
    4. The Red Giant Phase
    5. Horizontal Branch
    6. The Asymptotic Giant Branch
    7. Super AGB Stars
    8. Massive Stars
    9. Summary
  9. Supernovae & Remnants
    1. Supernovae
    2. White Dwarfs
    3. Neutron Stars
    4. Black Holes
    5. Gravitational Waves
  • Postface