2017 Earth and Space Sciences A B

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Academic unit or major
Basic science and technology courses
Tsunakawa Hideo  Nakamoto Taishi  Nagai Tsugunobu  Nakajima Junichi  Okuzumi Satoshi  Yokoyama Tetsuya  Sato Bunei  Ueno Yuichiro  Nomura Hideko  Ohta Kenji 
Class Format
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Tue7-8(W241)  Fri7-8(W241)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
Access Index

Course description and aims

This course will provide an overview of modern earth and space sciences. First the instructor will introduce how to measure size, distance, and physical and chemical properties of celestial objects, and will explain basic components of the universe such as stars and galaxies. Next, the instructor will introduce the evolution of the universe beginning with big-bang, together with cosmic and stellar nucleosynthesis. Lastly, the origin of our solar system will be discussed, and the instructor will present the latest results from observations of extrasolar planets.

Student learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to understand basic concepts of modern earth and space sciences based on observational facts from astronomy and the laws of physics and chemistry.


astrophysics, planetary physics, cosmochemistry

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

At the beginning of the class, a summary of the previous lecture is given. Then the main points of the day's lecture are presented, and students are asked to provide solutions to some of the questions as necessary.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Overview of the universe Understand basic structure and components of the universe.
Class 2 Size and distance of celestial objects Understand how to measure the size and distance of celestial objects.
Class 3 Law of motion and mass of celestial objects Understand the law of motion, gravitation, and Kepler's law.
Class 4 Temperature and spectrum of celestial objects Understand the relation between radiation energy and temperature, and the basics of spectrum.
Class 5 Stars Understand magnitudes and colors of stars, and HR diagram.
Class 6 Structure of milky way galaxy Understand proper motion and radial velocity of stars, and structure of our galaxy.
Class 7 Galaxies and universe Understand the large-scale structure of the universe.
Class 8 Big-bang and expanding universe Understand observational evidences of expanding universe, and its dynamics.
Class 9 Cosmic nucleosynthesis Understand the basics of element and atomic structure, and big-bang nucleosynthesis.
Class 10 Stellar interiors Understand hydrostatic equilibrium and properties of main-sequence stars.
Class 11 Formation and evolution of stars, and stellar nucleosynthesis Understand the basics of star formation and evolution, and nucleosynthesis in stellar interiors.
Class 12 Solar system: interiors, atmospheres, and surface environments of the earth and planets Understand components of the solar system, and properties of planets.
Class 13 Formation theory of solar system Understand basic concepts of solar-system formation.
Class 14 Meteorite chronology: materials of the earth and planets Understand the basics of chronology based on radioactive isotopes.
Class 15 Extrasolar planets Understand observational methods for extrasolar planets.



Reference books, course materials, etc.

Reference books and course materials are introduced during the course.

Assessment criteria and methods

Student's knowledge of basic laws for celestial objects and modern astronomy will be assessed. Exercise problem 50%, final exam 50%.

Related courses

  • LAS.A102 : Earth and Space Sciences B
  • LAS.A110 : Earth and Space Sciences, Laboratory and Field Studies (geophysics)
  • LAS.A111 : Earth and Space Sciences, Laboratory and Field Studies (earth materials)
  • LAS.A112 : Earth and Space Sciences, Laboratory and Field Studies (astronomy)

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)


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