Astronomy is the oldest branch of natural science that deals with heavenly objects. Night sky observations of prehistoric cultures helped them to learn about seasons, phases of moon, eclipses and celestial navigation. Galileo Galilei first pointed telescope towards the heavens and realized that heavenly body are not unchanging spherical objects, rather evolving entities with variety of shapes and sizes. By applying laws of physics, astrophysicists try to understand the origin, structure, and evolution of planets, stars, galaxies, and the universe.
Fuelled by technological developments, the field of astronomy and astrophysics is currently gaining importance worldwide. A new generation of spaceborne telescopes such as Hubble Space Telescope, Chandra X-ray observatory and the Spitzer Infrared Space Telescope together with advanced ground-based telescopes and enormous increases in computing power are enabling a golden age of astrophysics.
Important discoveries have been made within our own solar system through explorations of robotic spacecraft and landers. Precise observations of centres of galaxies including our own Milky Way Galaxy revealed that most galaxies, if not all, harbour central supermassive black hole responsible for extremely energetic and exotic phenomena associated with quasars and radio galaxies. We also discovered that universe is expanding with ever increasing rate suggesting that we are living in an epoch of dark energy dominated universe. With CMB data from WMAP and PLANCK, we understand a great deal about large scale structure formation. The MS program in Astronomy and Astrophysics focuses on underlying physics of phenomena beyond the Earth, theory, data analysis and modeling techniques, which will undoubtedly play a prominent role in international basic research. The key areas of focus include Gravitational Physics, Galaxy Evolution, Dynamics and Evolution of Supermassive Black Holes in Galaxy Centres, Modeling of Galaxy Mergers, Gravitational Waves Data Analysis, Solar Plasma Physics The main objectives of the program are initiation in scientific research and training in Astronomy and Astrophysics.