Embry-Riddle’s Bachelor of Science in Space Physics is designed for students with superior math and science skills and have a strong interest in space. Graduates emerge with the skills needed to excel in graduate studies, to contribute to the growing commercial space movement in a meaningful way, or to begin a career in applied physics. Students in the Space Physics program work under the direction of renowned physicists who share their passion for the universe. The Space Physics program at ERAU is designed to help students explore the physical phenomena observed in our universe, as well as measure the physical parameters of nearby exoplanets using our campus observatories.
A Space Physics degree provides a strong experimental physics background, so graduates emerge from the program ready to work in research or within the burgeoning commercial space industry.
Program graduates are also well suited for pursuing careers in medical physics, biophysics, plasma physics, and in the military and security sectors.
Even as an undergraduate, students have the opportunity to be involved with a variety of faculty-sponsored research projects.
Students at ERAU can join a number of professional organizations and clubs to begin networking and fully immerse themselves in the field. Organizations of interest include the student chapter of the Mars Society, Society of Physics Students, and Sigma Pi Sigma, the national physics honors society.
Part of the Department of Physical Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences, the B.S. in Space Physics degree program emphasizes the physics of the solar-terrestrial and distant-space environments.
Students learn how to study the magnetic and electric phenomena that occur in outer space, in the upper atmosphere of planets, and on the sun. In the field, space physicists use ground-based instruments, balloons, rockets, satellites, and deep space probes to study these phenomena.
This program is designed to produce graduates who want to pursue careers in space-related professions or who want to pursue advanced studies in diverse areas of science and engineering.
The College of Arts and Sciences building houses Florida’s largest university-based research telescope, an instrumented 1-meter, Ritchey-Chrétien reflecting telescope. Adjacent, is a helioscope to observe solar activity.
ERAU’s Daytona Beach Campus is located just 50 miles north of Kennedy Space Center, which is the epicenter of Florida’s Space Coast. Students can witness launches from campus by just stepping outside and looking southward.
The Daytona Beach Campus location places ERAU in close proximity to much of the activity surrounding the next generation of space exploration missions.
A typical first year will include General Education courses plus core work, such as Current Topics in Space Science and Foundational Math and Science courses.
The program shares its facilities and some course work with the highly successful Engineering Physics program, one of the largest of its kind in the U.S.
Students can take courses at the Kennedy Space Center via the Florida Space Institute, of which ERAU is a member. Or take special tours of space facilities with classes or clubs, participate in co-ops or internships, and attend space launches.
The Bachelor of Science in Space Physics is designed to produce graduates who want to pursue careers in space-related professions or who want to pursue advanced studies in diverse areas of science and engineering. This program supports the University’s purpose “to provide a comprehensive education to prepare graduates for productive careers and responsible citizenship with special emphasis on the needs of aviation, aerospace engineering, and related fields.”
As defined by NASA, “Space Physics is the scientific study of magnetic and electric phenomena that occur in outer space, in the upper atmosphere of planets, and on the Sun. Space physicists use ground-based instruments, balloons, rockets, satellites, and deep space probes to study these phenomena where they occur.” Examples of such studies include space shuttle aurora observations, ground-based solar studies, ground-based ionospheric studies, balloon flights to the edge of the atmosphere, and sounding rocket flights into near space.
The program shares its facilities and some coursework with the Engineering Physics and Astronomy & Astrophysics programs.
To enter this program, students must have completed four years of high school science and mathematics, demonstrating a high level of competency. Successful candidates for this program will be prepared to enter Calculus I and Chemistry for Engineers.
The Bachelor of Science in Space Physics degree program requires 121 credit hours. A minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.0 is needed for all required EP and PS courses, including technical electives. The program can be completed in eight semesters. The courses necessary to earn this degree are listed below. Students should be aware that several courses in each academic year may have prerequisites and/or corequisites. Check the course descriptions at the back of this catalog before registering for classes to ensure requisite sequencing.
A grade of C or better is required to satisfy lower-level prerequisites for entry into all EP and PS courses.
For a full description of Embry-Riddle General Education guidelines, please see the General Education section of this catalog. These minimum requirements are applicable to all degree programs.
|EP 101||Current Topics in Space Science||1|
|MA 241||Calculus and Analytical Geometry I||4|
|MA 242||Calculus and Analytical Geometry II||4|
|CHM 140||Chemistry for Engineers||4|
|CHM 140L||Chemistry for Engineers Laboratory||1|
|Communication Theory and Skills *||6|
|PS 226||Physics I||3|
|PS 226L||Physics I Laboratory||1|
|Lower-Level Humanities *||3|
|Lower-Level Social Sciences *||3|
|EGR 115||Introduction to Computing for Engineers||3|
|MA 243||Calculus and Analytical Geometry III||4|
|MA 345||Differential Equations and Matrix Methods||4|
|Communication Theory and Skills *||3|
|PS 227||Physics II||3|
|PS 228||Physics III||3|
|PS 228L||Physics III Laboratory||1|
|Lower or Upper-Level Humanities or Social Science Elective *||3|
|EP 320||Electro-Optical Engineering||3|
|EP 393||Spaceflight Dynamics||3|
|EP 400||Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics||3|
|MA 441||Mathematical Methods for Engineering and Physics I||3|
|MA 442||Mathematical Methods for Engineering and Physics II||3|
|PS 303||Modern Physics||3|
|PS 305||Modern Physics Laboratory||1|
|PS 320||Classical Mechanics||3|
|Upper-Level Humanities or Social Science Elective *||3|
|EP 410||Space Physics||3|
|EP 411||Space Physics II||3|
|EP 420||Planetary Science||3|
|EP 440||Engineering Electricity and Magnetism||3|
|EP 455||Quantum Mechanics||3|
|EP 492||Senior Project||3|
|PS 400||Senior Physics Laboratory I||3|
|PS 405||Atomic Nuclear Physics||3|
Embry-Riddle courses in the General Education categories of Communication Theory and Skills, Humanities and Social Sciences and the Technical Electives may be chosen from the approved list of courses, assuming prerequisite requirements are met. Courses from other institutions are acceptable if they fall into these broad categories and are at the level specified in the Space Physics vertical outline.
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