In this course you will perform astronomical measurements including observations, to study relevant physical processes. You will learn how to process astronomical data and how to calculate uncertainties. Subsequently, you will tackle realistic astronomical problems, using your programming knowledge and experience from the first semester of the Astronomy bachelor’s programme. You will gain hands-on experience in the practice of handling telescopes and performing astronomical observations during a visit to the Artis Planetarium in Amsterdam and working at the Old Observatory in Leiden. Based on data experiments you will write research reports about astronomical subjects covered in the first semester. For this course, it is important to organise your activities outside the classical sessions well. And in addition to collaborating in data processing, you also learn how to write a scientific report.
The course covers the following themes:
Error analysis and calculating measurement errors
Selecting astronomical data from digital files
Evaluating simple rules and relations in measurement data
Writing a report according to scientific standards
Working with photometric, astrometric and spectroscopic data
After this course, you can process astronomical measurement data within the context of astrophysical laws as introduced in the Introduction to Astrophysics course. For that, you will apply a correct error analysis and report all this in a scientific report.
After this course, you will be able to:
Compose compact Python code for scientific analysis
Perform linear least squares method and derived methods
Select and combine astronomical samples
Construct simple astronomical charts
Reference scientific literature
Apply distance modulus
Construct a color-magnitude plot
Perform and process astronomical CCD observations
Identify spectral lines and measure Doppler shifts
In this course, you are trained in the following soft skills:
Planning your work well in advance
Knowing when and where to ask for help
Collaborating with other students and to complement each other within a team
Writing based on facts
Mode of instruction
Observation nights and afternoons
Written reports. The final grade is a weighted average of the experiment reports. Reports assessed as ‘insufficient’ can be improved and handed in again; these will be assessed with a maximum grade of 6.0. Further details can be found on Brightspace
Instructions and course material can be found on Brightspace. Registration for Brightspace occurs automatically when students enroll in uSis via uSis by registration for a class activity using a class number
Background texts and instructions will be made available via Brightspace.
Register via uSis. More information about signing up for classes and exams can be found here. Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Prospective students website for information on how to register. For a la carte and contract registration, please see the dedicated section on the Prospective students website.
Docent: Dr. A. (Ana) Monreal Ibero
Please note that this course is in English
In addition to the lectures planned in the schedule, availability on fixed observation nights in the period February-April is essential. Depending on weather conditions all students perform observations in small groups during one or two nights and one or two afternoons/evenings in this period, between 17.30 and 21.30 hrs.