Astro 426/526

Optics and Instrumentation

Spring 2022


Class Meeting Times

Mondays and Wednesdays 2:00pm - 3:15pm, PAIS Room 1160


Course Description

Principles of optics and quantum physics applied to modern astronomical instrumentation (over a wide range of electromagnetic wavelengths), data acquisition and processing. This is a dual enrollment course for both undergraduate and graduate students.


There are no official prerequisites for this course, but students are expected to have a background in general physics, algebra, calculus, and basic computational and programming skills.

Course Goals
After completing this course, the student will be able to:
• Understand the fundamentals of how instruments at multiple wavelengths collect and affect data (imaging, spectroscopy, interferometry, etc.)
• Develop awareness of current state of the art instrument technologies and techniques across the electromagnetic spectrum.
• Understand how noise and instrumental artifacts can affect data
• Perform basic statistical analysis of datasets