Astrophysical Hydrodynamics

For 2022 AW semester


Instructor: Yosuke Mizuno
Office: Tsung-Dao Lee Institute, N651

Class hours: Friday, 12:55 – 15:40 (6-8 period)
Place: Physics building No.5, Room: 502

Online connection: 


Meeting Password: 7311

1. Course description:

Hydrodynamics is a successful framework to describe the dynamics of matter in the universe on all scales. This course will provide an introduction to the mathematical and physical properties of hydrodynamics and its extension to magnetised fluids, i.e. magnetohydrodynamics in astrophysics. Starting from overview of fluids and plasmas in astrophysics, the equations of hydrodynamics will be derived and their most important properties will be discussed. The course will also discuss the nonlinear nature of the hydrodynamics equations and the occurrence of nonlinear waves such as shocks. Then we will deal with neutrally charged and magnetised plasmas and discuss the basic features of ideal magnetohydrodynamics and the associated nonlinear waves. The final part of lecture will provide the astrophysical applications.

2. Text:

None required. Lecture note will be posted on my website before the subject.

3. References:

  1. C.J. Clarke & R.F. Carswell, 2007 “Principles of Astrophysical Fluid Dynamics” (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK)
  2. L. Rezzolla & O. Zanotti, 2013 “Relativistic Hydrodynamics” (Oxford University Press, Oxford UK)
  3. J. Goedbloed & S. Poedts, 2004 “Principles of Magnetohydrodynamics: With Applications to Laboratory and Astrophysical Plasmas” (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK)
  4. E.R. Priest, 1982, “Solar Magnetohydrodynamics” (Springer, Netherlands)

4. Teaching Method:

Attendance (20%) Homework (40%) Final presentation (40%)

Lecture Notes

Ch 0: Introduction (PDF)
Ch 1: Basic Concepts of Fluid (PDF)
Ch 2: Formulations of the Hydrodynamic Equations (PDF)
Ch 3: Kinetic Theory (PDF)
Ch 4: Gravity & Hydrostatic Equilibrium (PDF)
Ch 5: Waves (PDF)
Ch 6: Shocks and Discontinuities (PDF)
Ch 7: Bernoulli’s equation and transonic flow (PDF)
Ch 8: Fluid Instabilities (PDF)
Ch 9: Viscous Flows (PDF)
Ch 10: Basics of Plasma (PDF)
Ch 11: Single Particle Motion (PDF)
Ch 12: Magnetohydrodynamic Equations (PDF)
Ch 13: MHD Waves (PDF)
Ch 14: MHD Shocks and Discontinuities
Ch 15: MHD Instabilities

Appendix (PDF)