Link to PHYS 7120

Radiative Processes      Slides      Assignments

Instructor: Zheng Zheng
Classroom: JFB 210
Class Time: Mon, Wed (9:40am - 11:35am)
Course Website:
Office Hours: Feel free to stop by my office (INSCC 326) if you see the door open. You can also contact me (801-581-8975; ) to set up a time to meet.

Number of Credit Hours: 4
   Main textbook: Rybicki & Lightman, Radiative Processes in Astrophysics
   Supplementary book: Jackson, Classical Electrodynamics


Welcome to the Radiative Processes course!

Our knowledge about celestial objects and the universe is largely obtained by observations of electromagnetic radiation. This course will provide students a working knowledge of the fundamental processes related to electromagnetic radiation, including topics on the generation, propagation, and scattering of radiation. Applications in astrophysics will be briefly discussed and be reflected in reading assignments and in some homework problems.

This research-oriented course focuses on providing physical insights into radiative processes. After completing the course, the students are expected to
  (1) have a solid background in understanding radiative processes, especially for those in the area of astrophysics;
  (2) build up a clear physical picture of the microscopic radiation mechanisms;
  (3) develop a basic knowledge to associate astronomical observations with the underlying physical processes;
  (4) be able to read and understand current research papers involving radiative processes;
  (5) be ready to apply the physics learned in class to research work.

This course fulfills the same degree requirements as PHYS 7120 and may be taken as a substitute for PHYS 7120. Students are expected to have a background in intermediate electromagnetic theory, introductory quantum mechanics, basics of special relativity, and some statistical mechanics.

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