ASTR 320 is an introduction to astronomical spectroscop

Spring 2017

Tu/Th 10:30-11:45 Watanabe 113

Prof. Fabio Bresolin

phone  956 8306
office Watanabe 423 (after class)
       IfA C-208 (by appointment)
y. It presents the different characteristics of spectra produced by a variety of astronomical sources (eg. stars, nebulae, galaxies), and explains the information they can provide. This course introduces the complexity of atomic and molecular energy levels, explaining the formation of absorption and emission lines in widely different physical conditions. A good understanding of these topics is necessary to appreciate the observational techniques used to collect the empirical knowledge that allows us to build and test astrophysical theories.

Prerequisites – The course is designed to be taken after ASTR 210 or 242. Students should be familiar with elementary quantum physics and calculus concepts, including multiple integrals and derivatives.

Study material – Lecture notes provided by the instructor.


Spectrographs, basics of radiation theory
Atomic and molecular structure
Radiative transitions
Spectral lines
Radiative transfer
Collisions and forbidden lines

Continuous processes
Photoionized nebulae
Neutral gas
Stellar atmospheres
Mass loss and stellar winds
Other (AGNs, X-rays)