Nuclear relativistic astrophysics 1

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course introduces the students to the principles of stellar physics, both at the microscopic and macroscopic levels. The topics cover the thermodinamical properties of stellar matter, the equilibrium and stability of self-gravitating objects, the production and transport of energy in stars. In this module, the general theory is applied to the the behaviour of classical stars.
Expected learning outcomes
At the end of the course, the student should know the following topics:
· Equation of state of matter at the different temperatures and densities found in stars
· Gravitational virial theorem and its application to stellar equilibrium and evolution
· Theory of politropes and Eddington's standard model
· Thermonuclear reaction in the various evolutionary phases
· Energy transport (conduction, convection and radiative transport)
· Random walk and diffusion applied to stellar atmospheres (Eddington's atmosphere, color temperature)
· Equations of stellar structure and theory of principal sequence (homology)
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
Lectures will be delivered online during the official schedule, using the Zoom platform.
Exams will be oral and performed in a Skype call.
Didactic material will we available on Ariel and on a dedicated repository
Course syllabus
Introduction to the course - Stellar evolution and formation of compact objects: temperature and density regimes.
Equation of state of stellar matter: EOS of perfect gases (classical, Fermi, Bose) in the non-relativistic and relativistic regime - Electrostatic corrections and effects of beta decay - EOS of dense matter below and above neutron drip - Exotic forms of matter.
Stellar structure and evolution: Hydrostatic equilibrium and the viral theorem -Gravitational contraction and stellar evolution - Thermonuclear reactions inside stars - Adiabatic index, stability and polytropes - Energy transport: conduction, radiative diffusion and convection - Diffusion and random-walk - Equations of stellar structure and standard model for radiative stars.
Prerequisites for admission
A basic knowledge of classical physics, quantum mechanics and special relativity is required, but the different topics will be presented consistently during the course.
Teaching methods
Attendance strongly recommended.
Traditional front lectures.
Teaching Resources
- A.C. Phillips: The Physics of Stars (Wiley Interscience, 1999)
- D. Prialnik: An Introduction to the Theory of Stellar Structure and Evolution (Cambridge University Press, 2000)
- S.L. Shapiro and S.A. Teukolsky: Black Holes, White Dwarfs, and Neutron Stars: the Physics of Compact Objects (Wiley Interscience, 1983)
- D.D. Clayton: Principles of Stellar Evolution and Nucleosynthesis (The University of Chicago Press, 1983)
Assessment methods and Criteria
The exam consists of an oral discussion of about one hour about the topics presented during the course. The student is tested on both the theory explained and its quantitative application to simple cases.
FIS/05 - ASTRONOMY AND ASTROPHYSICS - University credits: 6
Lessons: 42 hours
Educational website(s)
upon appointment
Dipartimento di Fisica - Sezione di Fisica Teorica - Studio DC/1/28