AST 4001: Astrophysics I - Stars and Stellar Evolution

Alexander Heger

Last Update on Saturday, 13-Dec-2008 10:31:37 AEDT



REMINDER: FINAL December 13, 2008, 10:30 AM-12:30 PM, PHYS 236A.

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Class date, time, and location

MTWTh, 10:10-11:00 AM CT

Physics 236A, 116 Church ST SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA

+44 58' 30.85", -93 14' 5.16"

Office Hours

Wednesdays, 13:00-14:30, Physics 342F


In class


Problems sets every two weeks, Tuesdays, due before class


Class Project

Build your own Star

Supplementing the class material the students will use a modern stellar evolution code to perform their own simulations of the life of a star. The students will make "numerical experiments" on how the evolution of stars changes when initial conditions or "input physics" is changed - e.g., how differences in nuclear reaction rates used change the evolution of stars. Such differences could, e.g., test the limits of current experimental and theoretical uncertainties in these nuclear reaction rates.

The class will use Bill Paxton's EZ Stellar Evolution code
Uses Linux gfortran (WIKI at
I recommed to use gfortran 4.3.1 or later. gfortran is part of the gcc compiler suite.

Another free FORTRAN compiler is g95 and can be downloaded for most platforms from

Information about computing at physics can be found at There are 5 Linux workstations in the physics lab in room 137. The astronomy lab is in room 469; they are supposed to be getting 3 new linux computers.

Project Sheets, due before class

Current Class Calendar