BGU Physics Department

Space Research 1

Lecturers in charge:
Prof.  David Eichler

Office hours:  Tuesday, 13:00-14:00
Amir Golan
Office hours:  Mon/Wed, 10:00-12:00

Lecture Hours:  Tuesday 14:00 - 17:00  @  34/114
                        Tuesday 17:00 - 18:00  @  32/207

Course Objectives:

  • To learn the methods of space research
  • To understand and apply the scientific method
  • To practice critical thinking
  • To learn physics
  • To gain  perspective about ourselves, the planet earth and our universe
Scientific Thinking
Scientific investigation requires you to:

  • Ask questions: How, where, why,..
  • Be objective
  • use deductive and intuitive reasoning
  • Make quantitative calculations
Course Topics:
  • Distance measuring and coordination
  • Telescopes 
  • Gravity
  • Particles in EM field, Radiation processes 
  • Spaceship earth, green house effect, extraterrestrial life
  • The solar wind and the heliosphere


  • class 1 - Coordination of space and basic distance measures [pdf,  ppt]
  • class 2 - The electromagnetic spectrum, Emission/Absorption spectrum, and their use in distance measurment[pdf,ppt]
  • class 3 - Telescopes (radio, IR, visible, UV, X-Ray, Gamma Ray)[pdf,ppt ]
  • class 4 - Scattering in rarified gas [pdf, ppt]
  • class 5 - Atmospheric scintillation [pdf, ppt]
  • class 6,7 - Particle motion in EM field and radiation processes [pdf,ppt]
  • class 8,9 -The solar wind and the heliosphere  [pdf,ppt]
  • class 10,11 - Spaceship earth. Green house effect[links]
  • cless 12 - Extraterrestrial life
  • class 13 - Order of magnitude physics
Class Exercises:

Sun & earth
Useful links,  Recommended reading and other on-line material

Class Textbooks:
  1. Van der Hucht K.A., Vaiana G., editors: New Instrumentation for Space Astronomy, Pergamon, Oxford 1978; QB 86.N48 1977
  2. Stecker F.W., Trombka J.I., editors: Gamma-ray Astrophysics, NASA 1973; QB 460.G35
  3. Bernacca P.L., Ruffini R., editors: Astrophysics from Spacelab, Reidel, Dordrecht 1980; QB 460.A88
  4. Giacconi R., Gursky H.: X-ray Astronomy, Reidel, Dordrecht 1974; QB 472.X2
  5. The physical universe: an introduction to astronomy / Frank H. shu; QB 43.2.S54 1982
Home Work Class Exercises & Home work solutions
Ex.1 Solution1
Ex.2 Solution2
Ex.3 Solution3
Ex.4 Solution4
Ex.5 Solution5    additional material
Ex.6 Solution6
Ex.7 Solution7
Ex.8 Solution8

You can follow your submissions.

Final Exam:

You should bring to the exam a calculator.
The exam will cover all of the material that  was given in class and in home work.

Course Policy:

Exercises will be given in class, and are due a week later.
exercises should be submitted electronically, on /SUBMISSIONS/SpaceRes1. [instructions]
The submitted
exercise file, should be in pdf, html, or doc.
The file name must begin with an "E" and followed by your ID no. [example: E354887112.pdf]

The file itself must contain:
The problem

The solution

Selected exercises will be solved in class the folllowing week.

   Last updated: Feb. 26, 2007 by Amir Golan