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Intro to Astrophysics

Intro to Astrophysics

Obtain insights into Astrophysics, without the need for much prior knowledge of Physics and Mathematics. Learn more about stars and galaxies in our universe, as also a brief introduction to Cosmology.

Course Details

Astronomy is often referred to as the oldest science. Interestingly it is still one of the most exciting fields of science and it captures the imagination of scientists as well as young students.

In this course, we will choose topics carefully that will give a deep insight into the subject without the need for much prior knowledge in Physics and Mathematics. We will focus on three things: 

  1. Stars and Galaxies in our universe - How do we know about them, their distances, the amount of light that they emit and so on. We will discuss in detail, the birth and death of stars, and introduce tools such as the Hertzsprung–Russell (H-R) diagram and how to use it. 

  2. Introduction to the night sky using a software: the major Constellations,the most important stars and what their life stores are, nearby Galaxies

  3. Brief introduction to Cosmology : Why Big Bang Theory? How may the universe end? Why do we talk about dark matter and dark energy?

We may end the workshop with some fun estimates and wild open questions like- How many planets are out there with life forms? Is there more than one universe?

Please note that this WILL NOT BE A workshop on black holes. The exposition will be at the level of 12th standard science in any standard curriculum.

About Facilitator:

Utpal Chattopadhyay

Utpal Chattopadhyay

Utpal is senior mentor and course designer at GenWise. His passion in life is "to firmly establish science as a wonderful culture in developing young minds."

Since 2010, Utpal has been teaching Advanced Physics to talented undergraduate students at the Indian Statistical Institute in Bangalore. He was one of the founders of Curiouscity Science Education, where he conducted numerous science sessions with middle school children. Utpal has been also been facilitating courses on Physics and Mathematics to gifted school students for the past several years.

Utpal has a bachelor's degree with honours in Physics from IIT Kharagpur (1st in his class), and a PhD from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. His corporate/ professional work experience includes stints at Bell Labs and Motorola (where he was a Director). Post 2005, he cannot imagine life without a chalk and the blackboard!

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