Current courses - Spring 2013
EAS 4803/8803-JW: Earth and Planetary Materials
Professors: Yuanzhi Tang & James Wray
This course will cover both fundamental principles and applications of mineralogy and petrology for understanding the composition of surface and subsurface materials on Earth and other planetary bodies. Students will learn the chemical structures of important mineral classes, and how mineral assemblages and micro-textures record the conditions of rock formation and alteration. A range of laboratory techniques for measuring mineralogy and petrology will be introduced.
EAS 4801/8001-CP: Planetary Science Seminar
Coordinators: Carol Paty & James Wray
This seminar is targeted at graduate and undergraduate students who have an interest in planetary science applications of geology, geophysics, chemistry, dynamics, atmospheric science, space plasma physics or any other focus area in planetary or solar system science. With a mix of local and visiting speakers, the seminar is a forum for discussing current planetary research with other interested students, postdocs and faculty from various departments across campus.
EAS 4370/6370: Physics of Planets
Professor: James Wray (Fall 2012)
In this course we will study the forces and influences that determine the composition, structure and evolution of the planets in our solar system. The keys to understanding solar system formation and evolution reside in observable planetary characteristics and those inferred from theory and indirect observation. This understanding has evolved over the last several hundred years as telescope technology and space travel have enhanced our ability to make sophisticated measurements of much of the solar system. Students will gain an overall understanding of the physics governing the orbits, surfaces, subsurfaces, atmospheres and magnetospheres of the planets and planetary systems (moons and rings). These concepts will be placed in the context of current formation/evolution theories, and related open science questions will be discussed in terms of potential spacecraft missions.