General information

Course type AMUPIE
Module title Asteroid Physics
Language English
Module lecturer prof. UAM dr hab. Anna Marciniak
Lecturer's email
Lecturer position Professor
Faculty Faculty of Physics
Semester 2022/2023 (winter)
Duration 45
USOS code 04-W-PHPL-45


lectures: 30 hours, practical laboratory classes: 15 hours

Module aim (aims)

The course is intended for 2nd cycle students in Astronomy programme. The main aim for students is
to acquire knowledge on the importance of asteroids for research on Solar System history, as well as
knowledge on various populations of asteroids and modern techniques to observe them, and to
determine their physical parameters. In addition, course participants gain practical skills to model
asteroid shapes basing on their brightness variations.

Pre-requisites in terms of knowledge, skills and social competences (where relevant)

To comprehend the lecture contents knowledge of fundamental physics and observational astronomy
is required, as well as mastering basic mathematical tools of physical phenomena description.


Course learning content:

Asteroid groups, populations and families.
Transneptunian objects.
Asteroid photometry. Reduced and absolute brightness, HG systems.
Asteroid sizes and methods to determine them.
Spectroscopic and polarymetric observations of minor bodies.
Asteroid taxonomy and thermal evolution.
Asteroid lightcurves and rotation rates. Triaxial ellipsoid model.
Lightcurve inversion method.
Asteroid imaging with adaptive optics, infrared observations, and radar ranging.
Stellar occultations by asteroids.
Binary asteroids.
Yarkovsky effect and its impact on asteroid orbital drift.
YORP effect and its impact on asteroid spins.
In situ asteroid studies by spacecrafts.

Reading list