Ampersand: Gateway Expeditions Into Exoplanets


Discovery and characterization of planets beyond our Solar System have transformed our view of the cosmos and our home planet, Earth. These alien worlds, referred to as exoplanets, are opportune cosmic laboratories for improving our understanding of the formation of planets and the origin of life. Many of these worlds are highly dissimilar to those in our Solar System, requiring significant paradigm shifts in modeling the physical processes that govern them. In line with this rigorous exploration, exoplanet research has recently become a significant branch of astrophysics. Gateway Expeditions into Exoplanets is a new introductory, non-calculus course that provides an introduction to exoplanets, covering their formation and evolution, diverse properties, and potential to support life. The course includes assignments and a class project featuring data analysis and modeling in exoplanet research, a student-led tournament between exoplanets called ExoCup, occasional Socratic discussions in an inverted classroom setting, and a trip to Yerkes Observatory to witness the history of developments in astronomy leading to the exoplanet revolution. The course will function as the first part of a new Ampersand Program, "Gateway Expeditions into Exoplanets and Black Holes". There is no prerequisite for taking this course.
Course Attributes: AS NSM; AS AN

Section 01

Ampersand: Gateway Expeditions Into Exoplanets
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