Instructor: Dr. Patrick Hartigan, HBH 350, X2245,

Location: Meets in HBH 227, Wednesdays from 12:05 pm to 12:55 pm

Office Hours/Feedback on Talks: Students who work with a faculty member should get feedback on their talks from their advisers. The instructor will be available to provide feedback to all other students and answer any questions about the seminar immediately after the talks. Questions related to scheduling can be addressed via email.

Course Description: ASTR 400 (undergraduate) and ASTR 500 (graduate) are a 1-credit seminar class that meets every week at 12:05. The course may be repeated for credit. Junior and senior astro majors and all astro graduate students should sign up for this class each semester.

Speakers include experts from around the world who come to Rice to discuss their research. Rice faculty, graduate students and undergraduates also participate by giving talks, the graduate students every semester and the undergrads every other semester. Student talks do not necessarily need to be on their own research. Full-hour talks should be 45 minutes in length, and half-hour talks 20 minutes, with 5 minutes for questions. We must vacate the room before 1 pm, so please be on time. It is up to the speakers to ensure that their talks display properly, so please check your presentation ahead of time. Abstracts should be provided to the instructor no later than Friday morning before the talk so notices can be distributed.

Prerequisites: Students taking this class should either be enrolled as a graduate student in the Department or closely-related field, or be a declared major for one of the undergraduate degrees in the Physics and Astronomy Department.

Grading: Pass/fail. At least 80% attendance is required to pass, and students must present a talk as described above.

Absences: If you are away for an academic reason, such as a conference, observing run, or experiment, please let me know beforehand, and that absence will not count against your attendance requirement.

Honor Code: Aside from the requirement to only sign in under your name, I can't think of any honor code issues with this class, though please see `Internet Disturbances' below.

Internet Disturbances: Please be respectful of the fact that the speaker has put in a great deal of effort on their talk, and in some cases has traveled a long way to be here. Please turn off all ringing, beeping devices and do not surf the internet, type loudly onto a keyboard, text, update Facebook, take selfies, email, Snapchat, stagger around playing Pokemon-Go, or embrace other electronic disturbances during a talk. If you must do anything like that, take it outside. Not only is it disrespectful to the speaker, but it is also distracting to anyone sitting behind you.

Auditors: Auditing this class is rare, most students who have an interest simply sign up for it. However, if you are away for a large fraction of the semester it could make sense to audit. Please see me about your circumstances if you fall into this category.

Disability Information: Students with a documented disability that impacts their work in this class should contact me to discuss their needs. Disabled students should also register with the Disability Support Services Office in the Ley Student Center.

(This section is now required by the Rice Administration for all Syllabi)

Students completing this class should be able to do the following:

Jan 10 Patrick Hartigan Organizational Meeting
Jan 17 [*] Cancelled: Ice Storm
Jan 24 Dr. Stefan Guilloteau [Univ. Bordeaux, France] Disks around young stars: Weighing the stars and their disks
Jan 31 Laura Flagg H- Opacity and Water Dissociation in the Dayside Atmosphere of the Very Hot Gas Giant WASP-18 b
Anneli Joplin [CWOC, Rice] Effective Data Visualization
Feb 7 [*] Maxwell Hummel Observing Galaxy Mergers at the Epoch of Reionization
Asa Stahl No Large Population of Unbound or Wide-orbit Jupiter-mass Planets
Feb 14 Dr. Patrick Hartigan [Rice] Observations of Entrainment in the HH 444 Stellar Jet
             " Analysis of Astronomical Interface Shapes
Feb 21 [*] Dr. Matthew Johnson [York University] Mapping the Universe on the largest scales with the Sunyaev Zel’dovich effect
Feb 28 Dr. George Younes [George Washington Univ.] The Strongest Magnets in the Universe
Mar 7 Dr. Mario Flock [JPL] Closing the gap between simulations and observations of Protoplanetary Disks
Mar 14 Spring Recess -------
Mar 21 [*] Dr. Andrew Smith [UMD] Gamma-Ray Astronomy at the Highest Energies
Mar 28 Dr. Jamie Tayar [Ohio State] Asteroseismic Tests of Stellar Models
Apr 4 Dr. Jin Koda [Stony Brook] Probing the molecular interstellar medium with radio interferometers
Apr 11 [*] Erik Weaver TBD
Kun Hu TBD
Apr 18 Jason Ling TBD

[*] : Conflicts with Faculty Senate meeting