Leaving the Solar System Course

In this course we leave our Solar System and explore up to about 7000 light years around the Sun. We discuss major observation techniques and look at different types of stars and other objects that we find and their properties. 
Version 6 is in revision (2024).

Title Description Run
Click on icon in column Run The Slide presentation will open in a separate tab  
Sense of Scale Continuing our scale model up to about 7000 light years. What do we find and what can we see with the naked eye? Units of distance in Astronomy; the magnitude scale. Korulogo 75png
Multiple systems Most stars are not alone. Binaries, Trinaries, etc. Open Clusters. Korulogo 75png
Distance and proper Motion Parallax as the first rung of the cosmic distance ladder outside the Solar System. How does it work and how do we separate it from proper motion of stars? Korulogo 75png
Exploring the Nearest stars An extensive exploration at increasing distance of a selection of the star systems, Open Clusters and Nebulae we find in this region. Korulogo 75png
About Stars Introduction to the most important physical characteristics of a star. Mass; what is luminosity?; Relation between temperature and colour. Introducing the Hertzsprung-Russell (HR-) diagram.This prepares for Spectroscopy and Stellar Evolution. Korulogo 75png
Nature of Light What is light? From Pythagoras to Niels Bohr. Reflection, Refraction, Diffraction and Interference. Wave-Particle Duality? Quantum model of light. Electron energy levels. Photon energy and absorption and emission lines in the light spectrum. Korulogo 75png
Spectroscopy in Astronomy Spectroscopy as the most important observation technique in astronomy. Discovery of Fraunhofer lines. Spectral classification and the HR-diagram again. Applications of spectroscopy. Radial velocity. Korulogo 75png
Stellar Evolution Star formation. Nuclear fusion explained. Main sequence stars. The final stage for sun-like and more massive stars. Neutron stars and Black holes. Mapping stellar evolution on the HR-diagram. The importance of the HR-diagram. Korulogo 75png
Exoplanets How do we find exoplanets? Observation programmes in space and on the ground, Properties and classification of exoplanets. How do we search for life? Any chance of finding intelligent life? Korulogo 75png
Travel to the stars A popular topic around the coffee table, but how realistic is that?. An inventory using a bit of physics. Korulogo 75png