Astro 342 Homepage - Solar System Astronomy

Fall 2003

A class are offered by The ISU Department of Physics and Astronomy

Bits of Astro 342 info.:

Course Calender

Course Policies, etc.

Problem Set 1
Problem Set 2
Problem Set 3
Problem Set 4

Project Exercise 1
Project Exercise 2

Some lecture notes

Some Websites of interest for this course:

The Astronomy Picture of the Day (Source of the background picture)

The JPL Mars Page.

The JPL Mars Global Surveyor Page.

More Mars (the Odyssey mission).

And More Mars (huge photo archive).

The University of Arizona's Lunar and Planetary Lab.

NASA's Galileo mission site

The SOHO solar imaging mission

The Earth Impact Database (all the craters...)

Extrasolar planet list

Making models of NASA spacecraft. What the heck!

A few years ago we were very lucky to have bright comets to observe, but there is almost always a faint one around for those with small telescopes, see Sky and Telescope magazine's online Comet Page.

Copyright 2003, by C. Struck

These notes may be copied without a royalty or fee so long as they are used by ISU students enrolled in Astro 120, and the notes are used for personal study. Other uses, including sale of copies of these notes may be made only with permission.

Syllabus Stuff


Text: Moons & Planets, by William K. Hartmann
Secondary References:
Planetary Sciences, by Imke de Pater and Jack J. Lissauer
Physics and Chemistry of the Solar System, by John S. Lewis
Worlds Apart: A Textbook in Planetary Sciences, by Consolmagno and Schaefer
The Planetary Scientists Companion, by Lodders and Fegley

Course Grades

Course grades will be determined on the basis of class participation,
and on your performance on tests, homework and the term project.
There will be two in-class hour exams, and and a final exam, though
that will also be only about an hour in length.  The bulk of each exam
will be devoted to the material covered since the previous exam, but a
portion will be cumulative.  

Relative weights are approximately as follows:
        Homework		35%
        Exams, 10% each		30%
        Project/Paper		25%
        Class Participations    10% 

Letter grades in terms of percentage of possible points will be about: 
	90-100%		A- - A
	75-89%		B- - B+
	55-74%		C- - C+
	40-54%		   D
	<40%		   F
These levels are partly based on absolute standards, but also on my
experience with what are reasonable expectations for students in this

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