Basic Astrophysics of Compact Objects
Alberto Sesana (University of Birmingham, U.K.)
This series of 12 lectures (90 min each) aims at covering our current basic astrophysical knowledge of compact objects, both stellar and supermassive, including white dwarfs, neutron stars, and stellar-intermediate- and supermassive black holes.
The lectures will be kept at a basic level. It will be a good opportunity for people without specific astrophysics background to get familiar with the target objects of gravitational wave detections, but also for people familiar with the matter to refresh their memory. The lectures will consist of a mix of projected slides and blackboard writing.
The four blocks of lectures over Fall/Winter 2015 will cover:
- formation and zoology of compact objects
- dynamics and evolution of compact objects
- accretion theory and compact objects appearance
- observations and possible gravitational wave counterparts.
The first block (September 15, 16, and 18, 2015) covered:
- star formation and stellar evolution
- basic physics of white dwarfs, neutron stars/pulsars and stellar mass black holes
- path to formation of intermediate and supermassive black holes
The second block (October 19, 20, and 21, 2015) covered:
- binary evolution, typology of mass transfers and connection with X-ray binaries (lecture 1-2)
- dynamics of multiple systems, stellar encounters (lecture 2)
- dense stellar systems, stars and globular clusters (lecture 3)
The third block (December 5, 6, 8, 2016) covered:
- From compact objects to massive black holes: seed formation and cosmic evolution
- Pairing and dynamics of massive black hole binaries: forming the loudest GW sources in the Universe
- A closer look to the dynamics in dense nuclei: extreme mass ratio inspirals and tidal disruptions.