Galactic Astronomy

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1998-08-17
  • Publisher: Princeton Univ Pr

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This is the definitive treatment of the phenomenology of galaxies--a clear and comprehensive volume that takes full account of the extraordinary recent advances in the field. The book supersedes the classic text Galactic Astronomy that James Binney wrote with Dimitri Mihalas, and complements Galactic Dynamics by Binney and Scott Tremaine. It will be invaluable to researchers and is accessible to any student who has a background in undergraduate physics. The book draws on observations both of our own galaxy, the Milky Way, and of external galaxies. The two sources are complementary, since the former tends to be highly detailed but difficult to interpret, while the latter is typically poorer in quality but conceptually simpler to understand. Binney and Merrifield introduce all astronomical concepts necessary to understand the properties of galaxies, including coordinate systems, magnitudes and colors, the phenomenology of stars, the theory of stellar and chemical evolution, and the measurement of astronomical distances. The book's core covers the phenomenology of external galaxies, star clusters in the Milky Way, the interstellar media of external galaxies, gas in the Milky Way, the structure and kinematics of the stellar components of the Milky Way, and the kinematics of external galaxies. Throughout, the book emphasizes the observational basis for current understanding of galactic astronomy, with references to the original literature. Offering both new information and a comprehensive view of its subject, it will be an indispensable source for professionals, as well as for graduate students and advanced undergraduates.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. 1
Galaxies: an overview
Introductionp. 1
A brief history of galactic astronomyp. 2
Photometric models of the Milky Wayp. 5
The nature of the spiral nebulaep. 0
Kinematic models of the Milky Wayp. 15
Stellar populationsp. 20
More recent developmentsp. 212 Astronom
Positions, motions and coordinate systemsp. 27
The equatorial systemp. 27
Galactic coordinatesp. 30
Parallaxp. 31
Proper motionsp. 34
Precession and nutationp. 35
Astrometric systemsp. 37
Distances determined from velocitiesp. 38
Radial velocitiesp. 39
Distances from the movingcluster methodp. 40
Secular parallaxesp. 42
Statistical parallaxesp. 45
Magnitudes and colorsp. 46
Apparent magnitudesp. 47
Colorsp. 52
Absolute magnitudesp. 56
Absolute energy distributions
and bolometric magnitudesp. 58
Mass-to-light ratios
Surface brightness and isophotal radii
Gravitational lensingp. 62
Archival data and catalogsp. 67
On-line resourcesp. 71
Problemsp. 743 The Prop
The masses of starsp. 76
The Mass of the Sunp. 77
Masses of binary starsp. 78
Visual binariesp. 78
Spectroscopic binariesp. 79
The radii of starsp. 82
Phase interferometryp. 82
Intensity interferometryp. 83
Speckle interferometryp. 83
Lunar occultationsp. 84
Eclipsing binariesp. 84
Astrophysical estimatesp. 86
Classification of starsp. 87
Novaep. 87
Pulsarsp. 87
Classification of stellar spectrap. 88
The MK systemp. 90
Physical interpretation of stellar spectrap. 94
Color-magnitude diagramsp. 102
Observed Cm-diagramsp. 103
Luminosity and color as functions of spectral classp. 104
The physical properties of stars on the MS and RGBp. 109
The stellar luminosity functionp. 109
Malmquist biasp. 111
Lutz-Kelker Biasp. 115
The general luminosity functionp. 119
Cluster luminosity functionsp. 119
Photometrically complete surveysp. 119
Proper-motion selected surveysp. 20
The luminosity function of a given MK spectral classp. 127
Catalogs of the nearby starsp. 130
Interstellar dustp. 131
Extinction and reddeningp. 133
Reddening-free indicesp. 138
Polarization of starlight by dustp. 140
Extinction of sightlines out of the Galaxyp. 140
Problemsp. 1434 Morphol
Morphological classification of galaxiesp. 146
The Hubble sequencep. 149
Effects of environmentp. 157
The galaxy luminosity functionp. 162
The field galaxy luminosity functionp. 162
The cluster galaxy luminosity functionp. 165
The luminosity function divided by morphological typep. 167
The Local Groupp. 169
Surface Photometry of Galaxiesp. 172
The night skyp. 173
Effect of seeingp. 176
Deprojecting galaxy imagesp. 179
Photometry of Elliptical Galaxiesp. 85
Radial surface-brightness profiles of elliptical galaxiesp. 185
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