Bender 's lectures on Galaxies, Cosmology and Dark Matter

This lecture gives an introduction to extragalactic astronomy:

It deals with spiral, elliptical and dwarf galaxies, their dynamics and chemical evolution. Furthermore the lecture gives an overview of galaxy interactions, as well as structure formation and galaxy clusters. It also deals with basic cosmology and the evidence for dark matter.

The individual chapters of this lecture are available in electronic form as pdf-files. To view them you can download the Acrobat Reader for free:

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Table of Contents

(available as PDF files)

content_ch1-7.pdf (50 kB)
content_ch8-16.pdf (35 kB)

Chapter 1: Introduction

  1. History
  2. Orders of magnitude
  3. Basic open questions
  4. Bibliography
ex_gal_lect1.pdf (60 kB)

Chapter 2: Galaxy Morphology and Classification

  1. Galaxy classification schemes
  2. Luminosities of bulges and disks
  3. Pitch angle as a function of the Hubble-type
  4. Other galaxy types
  5. Mass-luminosity ratios
ex_gal_lect2.pdf (5.4 MB)

Chapter 3: Chemical Evolution

  1. Production and emission of the elements
  2. Initial mass function (IMF)
  3. Star formation rate (SFR)
  4. Basic chemical evolution model
  5. Solution of the chemical evolution equations
ex_gal_lect3.pdf (10.7 MB)

Chapter 4: Stellar and Galactic Dynamics

  1. Relaxation of stellar systems
  2. The collisionless Boltzmann equation
  3. The Jeans equations
  4. The virial equations
ex_gal_lect4.pdf (150 kB)

Chapter 5 (Part I): Spiral Galaxies

  1. Components of spiral galaxies
  2. Radial brightness and density profiles
  3. Characteristic parameters of bulges and disks
  4. Globular cluster systems of galaxies
  5. Star formation history (SFH) in spirals
  6. Stellar population of the galactic bulge
  7. Stellar population of the solar neighbourhood
ex_gal_lect5_1.pdf (16.7 MB)

Chapter 5 (Part II): Spiral Galaxies

  1. Rotation of spirals
  2. Dark matter in spiral galaxies
  3. Orbits of stars in disks: the epicycle approximation
  4. Stability of disks
  5. Spiral structure in disks
  6. Simulations of spiral structure
ex_gal_lect5_2.pdf (7.0 MB)

Chapter 6: Dwarf Galaxies

  1. Overview
  2. Stellar populations and chemistry of dwarf galaxies
  3. Kinematics of dwarf galaxies
  4. Neutrino phase space density in comparison with the phase space density of dark matter in dwarf galaxies
ex_gal_lect6.pdf (3.5 MB)

Chapter 7 (Part I): Elliptical Galaxies

  1. Overview
  2. Global parameters
  3. Isophotes and the shape of elliptical galaxies
  4. Dynamics and kinematics
  5. Mass-to-light ratios
ex_gal_lect7_1.pdf (11.6 MB)

Chapter 7 (Part II): Elliptical Galaxies

  1. Mass determination for spherical galaxies using velocity dispersion profiles
  2. Fundamental plane of elliptical galaxies
  3. Hot X-ray gas around elliptical galaxies
  4. Stellar populations of elliptical galaxies
  5. Why do elliptical galaxies exist?
ex_gal_lect7_2.pdf (6.4 MB)

Chapter 8: Mergers of Galaxies

ex_gal_lect8.pdf (5.4 MB)

Chapter 9: Active Galactic Nuclei

  1. AGN types
  2. Structure of the active galactic nuclei
  3. The unified model of the active galactic nuclei
ex_gal_lect9.pdf (8.9 MB)

Chapter 10: Local Universe

  1. Local group
  2. Supergalactic plane
  3. Distribution of nearby groups
  4. Large-scale distribution of galaxies
ex_gal_lect10.pdf (7.2 MB)

Chapter 11: Gravitational Lensing

  1. Basics of gravitational lensing
  2. Lensing geometry and lens equation
  3. Einstein radius and critical surface density
  4. Magnification by a point mass lens
  5. Effective lensing potential
ex_gal_lect11.pdf (9.2 MB)

There is also a simulation showing the effect of a gravitational lens passing in front of a background radio source:

animated_lens_large.gif (0.9 MB)

Chapter 12: Clusters and Groups of Galaxies

  1. Selection Criteria for Clusters and Groups
  2. Nearby Galaxy Clusters
  3. Luminosity Functions
  4. Characteristic Time Scales for Groups and Clusters
  5. X-Ray Gas in Galaxy Clusters
  6. Masses of Galaxy Clusters
ex_gal_lect12.pdf (12.8 MB)

Chapter 13: The Homogeneous Universe

  1. Big-bang scenario: basic observations and assumptions
  2. Robertson-Walker metric
  3. Friedmann equations
  4. Basic cosmological parameters
  5. Redshift
  6. Dynamics of homogeneous universes
  7. Evolution of physical properties
ex_gal_lect13.pdf (1.8 MB)

Chapter 14: The Early Universe

  1. Cosmic microwave background (CMB)
  2. Decoupling of the radiation
  3. Primordial nucleosynthesis
ex_gal_lect14.pdf (0.7 MB)

Chapter 15: Structure Formation in the Universe

  1. Angular power spectrum of CMB fluctuations
  2. Linear growth of structure
  3. Non-linear growth: the spherical collapse model
  4. Different types of dark matter
  5. N-body simulations
ex_gal_lect15.pdf (7.0 MB)

Chapter 16: Galaxy Evolution

  1. Faint galaxy counts
  2. Butcher-Oemler effect
  3. Lyman-alpha forest
  4. Evolution of elliptical galaxies
  5. Evolution of spiral galaxies
  6. High-redshift galaxies
  7. Hubble Deep Field (HDF)
ex_gal_lect16.pdf (5.0 MB)

If you have any comments (found any errors?), then please send a mail to

Last modified on July 27 2000