Sep 21, 2019  
2018-2019 Catalog 
    
2018-2019 Catalog [ARCHIVED PUBLICATION] Use the dropdown above to select the current catalog.

ASTR021 HM - Stars, Planets, and Life: Introduction to Astrobiology


Credit(s): 3

Instructor(s): Esin, Lyzenga

Description: This course aims to acquaint the students with the basic concepts of astrobiology, which is the study of the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. We will focus on two questions: How does life begin and evolve? Is there life outside of Earth and, if so, how can it be detected? The topics covered during this semester-long course will include basic orbital mechanics, thermal equilibrium of planets and criteria for habitability, the search for habitable planets outside our Solar System and planetary exploration inside our Solar System, appearance and evolution of organic compounds throughout our Universe leading to the appearance of self-organizing molecules, impact of planetary properties on the possibility of life forming and evolving, and, finally, a review of the common theories concerning the origin of life on Earth.