• Class Number 6994
  • Term Code 3260
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • AsPr Christoph Federrath
    • AsPr Christoph Federrath
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/07/2022
  • Class End Date 28/10/2022
  • Census Date 31/08/2022
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/08/2022
SELT Survey Results

The course systematically develops the fundamental equations of gas dynamics including magnetic fields. These equations are then used to study astronomical flows in a number of different environments such as stellar winds, wind-driven bubbles, interstellar shock waves, supernova blast waves, accretion disks, jets, and turbulent flows. Through the study of these specific examples, the course develops a good general physical and mathematical understanding of the transport of mass, momentum and energy in astrophysics.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Understand the physical and mathematical basis of astronomical flows.
  2. Develop mathematical and physical skills enabling them to analyze the effects of gravity, pressure forces and magnetic fields on the transport of mass, momentum and energy.
  3. Develop computational skills relevant to the analysis of astrophysical flows.

Research-Led Teaching

This course includes the use of research-based data from simulations and observations.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Course introduction; Info on assignments/assessment, student reps, etc.; Motivation for studying hydrodynamics assignment 1 published
2 Derivation of the basic hydrodynamical equations; Equation of state assignment 2 published
3 Validity of the gas/fluid approach; Gas/fluid instabilities start assignment 1 due
4 Jeans analysis; Kelvin-Helmholtz and Rayleigh-Taylor instability assignment 2 due
5 Spherical steady flows; Parker wind; Bondi accretion assignment 1 feedback assignment 3 published
6 Steepening of sound waves; Shock waves (Rankine-Hugoniot jump conditions); Propagation of shock waves assignment 2 feedback
7 Supernova explosions; Sedov-Taylor solution; Introduction to magnetohydrodynamics (MHD) assignment 3 due
8 Derivation of the MHD equations; MHD waves; Non-ideal MHD assignment 4 (exam) published
9 Viscous fluids and gases, vorticity; Turbulence and MHD dynamo amplification assignment 3 feedback
10 Guest lectures/student projects; Programming hydrodynamical problems assignment 4 due
11 Guest lectures/student projects; Programming hydrodynamical problems
12 Summary, Q&A, course feedback, other activities assignment 4 feedback

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Assignment 1 20 % 1,2,3
Assignment 2 20 % 1,2,3
Assignment 3 20 % 1,2,3
Assignment 4 40 % 1,2,3

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Participation is strongly encouraged, but not directly assessed.


The 4th assignment serves as the exam and counts double compared to the first 3 assignments.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 1

The hydrodynamical equations

Due date: Week 3

Estimated return date: Week 5

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 2

Ideal gas, instability of gases/fluids

Due date: Week 4

Estimated return date: Week 6

Assessment Task 3

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 3

Outflows, accretion

Due date: Week 7

Estimated return date: Week 9

Assessment Task 4

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Assignment 4

Shocks, discs, MHD, turbulence

Due date: Week 10

Estimated return date: Week 12

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with.

The Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Feedback on assignments is returned in class and/or by email.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Resubmission of assignments is not permitted.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

AsPr Christoph Federrath

Research Interests

star formation, interstellar medium, turbulence, magnetic fields, numerical and observational methods; more info here: https://www.mso.anu.edu.au/~chfeder/index.html

AsPr Christoph Federrath

By Appointment
AsPr Christoph Federrath

Research Interests

AsPr Christoph Federrath

By Appointment

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