The SPaCE program in astrophysics is part of the Aix-Marseille University master of physics.
This 2-year course is organized with lectures in general physics during the first year (M1)
and specialized lectures in astrophysics during the second year(M2). Along with supervised projects
and internships the students will gradually acquire concepts, tools and methodology to achieve a research work.
The proposed projects are defined in close link with lectures in astrophysics. An optional internship in one of
our partner universities (Chile, Japan, Poland, Taiwan) is possible between the first and the second year.
A six-week internship in astrophysics is compulsory in M1 and a four-month internship in astrophysics is compulsory
at the end of the second year (from March to June).
To perform the SPaCE program in astrophysics, students will have to choose a set of lectures among the one
proposed in the Aix-Marseille University master of physics.
The lectures of this first year (M1) focus on fundamental physics with an introduction to Astrophysics and cosmology.
The students are also trained to instrumental and numerical physics. The M1 lectures will take place on the
Saint-Charles campus. Astrophysic related projects are hosted at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique
The M1 six-week internship will take place at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille.
An optional internship is possible in one of our partner university (Japan, Chile, Poland, Taiwan).
The students master of Marseille are hosted in our laboratories
in Marseille with dedicated rooms. They regularly meet their teachers and supervisors.
List of the lectures :
Laboratory and numerical methods
Motivation: the goal of this optical lecture is to introduce the main themes of modern astrophysics,
insisting in the various physical processes at work.
The birth of modern astrophysics
a brief history of astronomy and cosmology
from astronomy to astrophysics
Sources of information in astronomy
the different part of the electromagnetic spectrum
the main emission processes
measurements :photometry and spectroscopy, ground and space measurements
Scale and measurement of astronomical distances
the scale of cosmic distances
cosmological distances, redshift
Stars,a dense medium
stellar spectra and classification, HR diagram
basics of stellar evolution
The interstellar medium, matter-radiation interaction
basics of radiative transfert :definitions and basic equations
the different phases of the interstellar medium
continuous and nebular emission!
Galaxies and matter distribution in the Universe
Introduction to galaxies
Galaxies spatial distribution
galaxies formation: the present paradigme
Introduction to high-energy phenomena
Introduction to X-rays and gamma rays astronomy
Quasars and galaxy active nuclei
Star companions, planetary systems
the Solar system
Motivation:the goal of this optional lecture is to introduce general relativity and the
subsequent main models of the Universe and tests in observational cosmology.
I. The main observations of the Universe.
Radiation and observations.The observables and their interpretation.
Distribution of the observed matter in the Universe.
The baryonic matter: direct and indirect observations
The dark matter and the dark energy
The three pillars of cosmology :galaxies recession, cosmological radiation,
elementary particles and primordial nucleosynthesis
Expression of the general relativity equations in the Robertson-Walker metric
Unvarying models at null cosmological constant
IV. Properties of the Friedmann--Lemaître models
Observational tests and evolution of the Universe
distances, age, Hubble constant, spectral shifts, deceleration parameters, scaling
factors, time, energy density, temperature, entropy.
The standard model : successes and difficulties
V. Introduction to the standard model
The new cosmological tests :anisotropy and cosmological background, baryonic
acoustic oscillations, far supernova and gravitational shear
The cosmological parameters and precision cosmology.
Acceleration of the Universe.
The Universe contents :
baryons, dark matter, dark energy
Structure of the Universe:
Amplitude of fluctuations, spectral index, reionization epoch.
Formation of the first stars and galaxies.
Mathematics for physics
2 Lectures out of :
Statistics and data analysis
Subatomic and particle physics
The lectures of this second year (M2) are specialized in astrophysics, with possibility to additionnal lecture
in any other field (high-energy physics, theoretical physics, atomic and molecular physics). The astrophysics
lecture are given at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille.
For both the projects and the four-month long internship the M2 students are hosted at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique
de Marseille with dedicated lecture rooms and library, where they regularly meet their teachers and advisors.
List of the lectures :
numerical and computational modeling
stars and galaxies
atomic and molecular physics, spectroscopy
galaxies and cosmology
instrumentation astronomy from ground and space
radiation matter interaction, radiative transfer
one-week astronomical observations at the Observatoire de Haute-Provence
4-month long internship in astrophysics at the Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille or elsewhere in France or abroad
List of projects proposed and some illustrations of achievements :