ASTR 2030001: BLACK HOLES
Course Timetable: Fall 2012
Reading: Be = Begelman and Rees;
Th = Thorne
1 
Aug. 28 
Overview/preview of the course and goals. You can find the preview here if you missed the class. 
2 
Aug. 30 
Background material: Scientific notation  Unit conversion 
The electromagnetic spectrum. 
3 
Sep. 4 
Video from "The Mechanical Universe": Lecture
1. 
4 
Sep. 6 
Special Relativity: Lorentz contraction  Relativity of Mass 
MassEnergy equivalence  Relativistic Light Aberration. Concept
of Spacetime. Relativistic addition of velocities. 
5 
Sep. 11 
General Relativity: The Equivalence Principle  Gravitational
Time Dilation. 
6 
Sep. 13 
Video from "The Mechanical Universe": Lectures 2 and
3. 
7 
Sep. 18 
Project I 
8 
Sep. 20 
General Relativity: Gravitational deflection of light 
Curvature  Tides  Geodesics. 
9 
Sep. 25 
Experimental tests of General Relativity: Mercury's Precession
 Gravitational Lensing and 
10 
Sep. 27 
Black Holes: The Schwarzschild's solution – Voyage to a Black
Hole. 
11 
Oct. 2 
Orbits in strongly curved
spacetime  Kerr Black Holes  No Hair Theorem – Price's
Theorem. 
12 
Oct. 4 
Quantum Mechanics: Waveparticle duality  Uncertainty
Principle  Bosons and Fermions  Pauli Principle and Degeneracy
Pressure. 
13 
Oct. 9 
Project II 
14 
Oct. 11 
Thermodynamics
of Black Holes: Area Theorem and Entropy of Black Holes – Vacuum
fluctuations and Hawking radiation – BH evaporation. 
15 
Oct. 16 
Inside Black Holes – Various types of singularities –
Penrose's theorem – Quantum foam – Wormholes and Time
Machines. 
16 
Oct. 18 
How stars are born, live, and die: White Dwarfs – Neutron
Stars – Black Holes. 
17 
Oct. 23 
Black Holes in popular movies: video clips from the movies :”Andromeda: Under the Night”, “The Black Hole”, and “Contact”, followed by discussion and clicker questions. 
18 
Oct. 25 
Project III 
19 
Oct. 30 
Fiske Planetarium: show on “The Milky Way: a City of Stars”. Hosted by Tito Salas. 
20 
Nov. 1 
Hunting for Black Holes in our Galaxy: Black Holes in Xray
Binaries – Accretion Disks. 
21 
Nov. 6 
Supermassive Black Holes: Quasars – Jets  quiescent black
holes at the center of the Milky Way and nearby galaxies. 
22 
Nov. 8 
Witnessing
the birth of a new Black Hole in the Universe: GammaRay
Bursts. 
23 
Nov. 13 
Fiske Planetarium: show on Supernovae hosted by Prof. D. McCray 
24 
Nov. 15 
The
Universe: solutions to Einstein's equations for a homogeneous and
isotropic Universe – the Big Bang Theory. 
Nov. 20 
Fall Break 

Nov. 22 
Thanksgiving 

25 
Nov. 27 
Guest lecture by Prof. Web Cash on “MAXIM” 
26 
Nov. 29 
Project IV 
27 
Dec. 4 
Guest lecture by Prof. Andrew Hamilton on Schwarzschild's black holes with visualization tools. 
28 
Dec. 6 
General Course Review. 
29 
Dec. 11 
Guest lecture by Prof. Andrew Hamilton on Kerr and charged black holes with visualization tools. 
30 
Dec. 13 
Practice questions for the final exam. 
FINAL EXAM: Sat, Dec 15, 4:307pm, in G1B30 