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Fluid Dynamics for Astrophysics

Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune and NPTEL via Swayam


This course provides a broad overview of fluid phenomena in Astrophysics. The first few weeks cover the basics of fluid dynamics, with an emphasis on compressible phenomena. These basic concepts will be applied in understanding astrophysical phenomena ranging from the solar wind to black hole accretion disks. Magnetic fields are often important in astrophysical situations - we therefore treat the basics of magnetohydrodynamics and use it to understand astrophysical dynamos and jets. Students of this course will be equipped with the basics needed for understanding the research literature in several areas in astrophysics.
NonePREREQUISITES : Participants should have a good grounding in classical mechanics, electrodynamics, kinetic theory of gases. Some exposure to Astrophysics would be good, but not essentialINDUSTRIES SUPPORT :None



Week 1:Introduction to the goals of the course. The continuum hypothesisWeek 2:Kinematics, conservation laws 1: the mass continuity equationWeek 3:Conservation laws 2: the momentum continuity equationWeek 4:Dimensionless numbers in fluid dynamics
Week 5:Dynamic similarity in fluid dynamics and aerodynamicsWeek 6:Compressible flows and the speed of soundWeek 7:An introduction to shocksWeek 8:Applications to Astrophysics: transonic flows – spherical accretion and he solar wind
Week 9:Applications to Astrophysics: the de Laval nozzle, astrophysical jetsWeek 10:Applications to Astrophysics: Accretion disksWeek 11:Including magnetic fields – basics of magnetohydrodynamicsWeek 12:Magnetohydrodynamic phenomena in Astrophysics: dynamos, magnetized jets

Taught by

Prof. Prasad Subramanian

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