How astronomers determine the nature and extent of the universe. Following the theme of the "Cosmic Distance Ladder," an exploration of how our understanding of astrophysics allows us to evaluate the size of the observable universe. Topics include direct distance determinations in the solar system and nearby stars, spectroscopic distances of stars, star counts and the structure of our galaxy, Cepheid variables and the distances of galaxies, the Hubble Law and large-scale structure in the universe, and quasars and the Lyman-alpha forest.
Introductory Physics (131-132 or 151-152 or 181-182), AND Calculus through Math 128, 132 or equivalent; AND at least one prior Astronomy or Physics course at the 200-level or above.
General Education Credit: