Department of Astronomy Center for Radiophysics & Space Research

ASTR 2212: The Solar System: Planets, Small Bodies & New Worlds

Credit Hours4

Prerequisite: introductory calculus or co-registration in MATH 1110 or MATH 1910; some knowledge of classical physics (mechanics and thermodynamics). Intended primarily for first and second-year physical science and engineering students.

Typically OfferedSpring

Introduction to the solar system with emphasis on the quantitative application of simple physical principles to the understanding of what we observe or can deduce. Topics include the formation and evolution of the solar system, the interiors, surfaces, and atmospheres of the planets including the effects of greenhouse gases on climate, smaller bodies and the orbits of solar system bodies.  Many planetary systems about other stars have now been discovered and comparisons will be made with our own system. Results from past and current spacecraft missions will be discussed including the Cassini mission to the Saturn system and the Mars Rovers. Class involvement will include individual projects and presentations. The course is more in-depth than ASTRO 1102/1104. All course materials will be available online.