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Information about the course:

PAP318 Galaxy formation and evolution (Galaksien synty ja kehitys)

Lecturer: Prof. Peter Johansson (Room D311) and Dr. Till Sawala (Room D324)
Course assistant: Dr. Pauli Pihajoki (Room D325)

Lectures: Thursdays  12.15-14.00  Room B120, Exactum
Problem sessions: Thursdays 14.00-16.00 Room B120, Exactum, every two weeks on the following dates: 20.9, 4.10, 18.10, 8.11, 22.11, 5.12
First lecture on 6.9.

Changes to lecturing schedule:

Lecture 11 to take place on Wednesday, November 21, 12.15-14.00 in Room D116, Physicum

Lecture 14 (Summary lecture) and Problem Session 6 to take place on Wednesday, December 5, 12.15-14.00 and 14.00-16.00, respectively, in Room D112, Physicum

  • In total 14 lectures (the last lecture is on 5.12.)
  • Problem sets will be handed out every two weeks. Each problem set will contain 5 questions totalling 6x5=30 questions.
  • The minimum requirement for the problem sets is 1/3 of the points, surplus points will result in bonus points for the exam.
  • Problem sets are handed out on Wednesdays and they should be returned by the next week Wednesday to the mailing box of the course asssistant.
  • The problems consist of both regular exercises and problems based on journal articles.

Course material:    

  • The primary course material will consist of the lecture notes provided by the lecturer.
  • In addition parts of the two following books will be extensively used:
  1. M. Longair: "Galaxy formation", 2nd ed. Springer, 2008
  2. H. Mo, F. van den Bosch & S. White: "Galaxy formation and evolution", Cambridge Univ. Press, 2010

Final exam:

  • The final exam will be held on Thursday 20.12.2018 at 10-14 in Room E205, Physicum

Course dates and syllabus:

Lecture 1: 06.09.2018: "Introduction to galaxy formation and overview"

  • Basic elements of galaxy formation
  • Galaxy formation timescales
  • Historical review of galaxy formation theory

Lecture 2: 13.09.2018: "Observations of galaxies"

  • The classification of galaxies
  • Statistical properties of the galaxy population
  • Galaxies at high redshifts

Lecture 3: 20.09.2018: "Cosmology and the evolution of small perturbations"  – Problem session 1

  • Robertson-Walker metric and the Friedmann equations
  • The age of the Universe and cosmological distances
  • The evolution of small perturbations    

Lecture 4: 27.09.2018: "Jeans' instabilities and horizons in an expanding Universe"

  • The Jeans' instability in a static and expanding Medium
  • Instabilities in the relativistic case
  • Cosmological horizons and perturbations on superhorizon scales

Lecture 5: 04.10.2018: "Baryonic and dark matter models of galaxy formation"

  • The sound speed and baryonic models of galaxy formation
  • Adiabatic and isothermal perturbations
  • Hot and cold dark matter in galaxy formation models

Lecture 6: 11.10.2018: "Correlation functions and the spectrum of the initial fluctuations" – Problem session 2

  • The two-point correlation function for galaxies
  • The initial power spectrum
  • Transfer functions        

Lecture 7: 18.10.2018: "Non-linear evolution of dark matter haloes" – Problem session 3

  • The non-linear collapse of density perturbations
  • Top-hat collapse and the Zeldovich approximation
  • The Press-Schechter mass function and dark matter density profiles


Lecture 8: 01.11.2018: "Formation and evolution of gaseous haloes"

  • The cooling and heating of gas in dark matter haloes
  • Radiative cooling and photoionizatoin heating
  • The cooling function and galaxy formation

Lecture 9: 08.11.2018: "Star formation and supernova feedback in galaxies" – Problem session 4

  • Molecular clouds and self-regulated star formation
  • Empirical star formation laws
  • Supernova feedback: The ejection and heating of gas

Lecture 10: 15.11.2018: "Formation of disk galaxies"

  • Observations: Mass components, angular momentum and rotation curves
  • Formation of disk galaxies
  • The origin of disk scaling relations    

Lecture 11: Wednesday 21.11.2018: "Galaxy interactions and transformations", Physicum D116

  • Galaxy interactions and encounters
  • Tidal stripping and dynamical friction
  • Orbital decay and galaxy merging

Lecture 12: 22.11.2018: "Formation of elliptical galaxies" – Problem session 5

  • Structure and dynamics of elliptical galaxies
  • Formation of elliptical galaxies
  • Observational constraints on formation scenarios

Lecture 13: 29.12.2018: "Formation of active galaxies"

  • The physics of AGNs
  • Formation and evolution of AGNs
  • AGNs and galaxy formation    

Lecture 14: Wednesday 05.12.2018: "Summary lecture" – Problem session 6, Physicum Room D112

  • Summary of the main results.
  • Putting it all together.
  • How do galaxies form and evolve?



Videos showing the formation of disk galaxies also by the FIRE collaboration:

Problem sets:

Final results and course grading:

Set of equations that will be distributed in the exam:



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