Physics with Astronomy & Space Science (PAS1)

This programme is particularly appealing if you are interested in exploring the universe through physics and pursuing a career in the space industry.

Curricular information is subject to change

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This program provides a positive experience of physics and encourages students to foster and maintain an intellectual curiosity in the discipline, specifically in the area of physics with astronomy and space science. We encourage/educate our students to become active, lifelong and autonomous learners with good prospects of employment in economic sectors requiring analytical skills or for further study of the subject. Our students will become well grounded in the fundamentals of physics with an appreciation of more specialised knowledge and the current frontiers of research. Our learning environment emphasises laboratory work at all stages, combining in-class, project and problem-solving work including data analysis and programming. Our students will be imbued with professional values including scientific integrity and ethical behaviour, and the ability to communicate complex information effectively. We deliver targeted modules throughout the degree complemented by specialised laboratories and field trips, to focus on all aspects of astronomy and space science. Assessment is based on individual work, group work, work in the laboratory, project work including student presentation and written report.


1 - On successful completion of the programme, students will have acquired a good understanding of the core of physics (as defined by the Institue of Physics degree accreditation document), and students will appreciate the current boundaries of scientific knowledge.
2 - Students will be able to tackle problems in physics and formulate an appropriate solution
3 - Students will be able to use mathematics to describe the physical world
4 - Students will be able to plan, execute and report the results of an experiment or investigation
5 - Students will be able to compare results critically with predictions from theory
6 - Students will also have acquired communications skills
7 - Students will have acquired analytical skills
8 - Students will have acquired IT skills
9 - Students will have acquired personal skills, the ability to work effectively both independently and as part of a team, interact constructively with other people, and show leadership in their area of expertise.
10 - Students will have acquired ethical behaviour, including critical thinking, understanding of arguments and consequences, and scientific integrity
11 - Students will be flexible, able to adapt and contribute to the specific research and development in the space science sector.
Approved Additional Standards for Continuation in undergraduate degree programmes in Science (all majors):

Students who return failing grades in a semester amounting to 15 credits, or more, will be identified under the UCD Continuation and Readmission Policy. Students whose rate of progression and performance over two academic sessions (2 years) is deemed unacceptable will be referred to the Academic Council Committee on Student Conduct and Capacity for exclusion from the programme.

As Stages 3 and 4 have the most dynamic components of the programme, and the material studied previously may no longer be relevant, a student who has been away from the programme for a significant period should be required to register again to Stage 3. The upper limit for completion of Stages 3 and 4 should be six years, if they choose to do 120 credits with 20 in each year.
This programme is particularly appealing if you are interested in exploring the universe through physics and pursuing a career in the space industry.

This is primarily a physics degree programme, with an emphasis on the applications of physics in astrophysics and space science. You will gain an understanding of how ground-based and space-based technologies are used to explore the universe and how modern science can be used to understand it.

The course contains modules in Physics, Mathematics, Astronomy and Space Science. Advanced topics include stellar and planetary formation and evolution, black holes, galaxies and cosmology. Related modules on Relativity, Elementary Particle Physics, Nuclear Physics and Quantum Mechanics provide a rigorous foundation in the science underpinning astronomy and astrophysics.
STAGES 1 & 2
There is a substantial emphasis on gaining hands-on experience in astronomical techniques, beginning in Stage 1. You will have access to data from UCD's robotic telescope in South Africa.

STAGE 3
In Stage 3, you will participate in either a week-long observational project at an international astronomical telescope or in a space mission design workshop, collaborating with students from international universities in the design of a gamma-ray astronomy satellite experiment.

STAGE 4
In Stage 4, you will undertake further advanced practical work in, for example, the analysis and interpretation of data from the Hubble Space Telescope and the ESA-Newton X-ray Multi-Mirror mission.
Support will be provided for students in applying to summer internship programmes at NASA, ESA, CERN and the Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias.

The UCD Physics with Astronomy & Space Science is an Institute of Physics accredited degree which positions graduates to go into the rapidly growing space sector. There are opportunities  for well qualified graduates to work with major space agencies, such as ESA and NASA, or with space companies. Graduates are also qualified to go into areas such as medical physics, meteorology, semiconductor technology, energy, ICT and finance.



Graduates may apply for MSc programmes such as Space Science & Technology. They may also pursue research through PhD programmes in Ireland and abroad in many fields of physics.


Dr Lorraine Hanlon UCD School of Physics Science Education & Research Centre Belfield, Dublin 4 Tel: +353 1 716 2214 Email: lorraine.hanlon@ucd.ie Web: www.ucd.ie/horizons
Stage 3

Students should take 5 core modules and two option module module. Students are required to complete 50 programme credits in Stage 3. In addition, students may select 10 credits from elective modules to complete Stage 3 or alternatively, select additional modules from the BSc programme.

Stage 4

Students must take 60 credits of Physics modules, seven specified core (C) modules worth 50 credits, and two option modules. If not taken in Stage 3, students MUST TAKE PHYC30080 as one of their option modules in Stage 4.

Module ID Module Title Trimester Credits
Stage 3 Core Modules
     
PHYC30170 Physics with Astronomy and Space Science Laboratory I 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

20

PHYC30020 Classical Mechanics and Relativity Autumn

5

PHYC30030 Quantum Mechanics Autumn

5

PHYC30100 Stellar Astrophysics & Astronomical Techniques Autumn

5

PHYC30070 Electromagnetism Spring

5

Stage 3 Core Modules
     
Stage 3 Options - A)1OF:
Students must take PHYC20100 if not taken in stage 2. If PHYC20100 had been taken in Stage 2, students must take PHYC30050 in Stage 3.
     
PHYC20100 Thermo & Stat Physics Autumn

5

PHYC30050 Condensed Matter Physics Autumn

5

Stage 3 Options - A)1OF:
Students must take PHYC20100 if not taken in stage 2. If PHYC20100 had been taken in Stage 2, students must take PHYC30050 in Stage 3.
     
Stage 3 Options - B)MIN1OF:
If not taken in Stage 2 students MUST TAKE ACM20030. If ACM20030 had been taken in Stage 2, students MUST TAKE PHYC30080 in Stage 3.
     
ACM20030 Computational Science Autumn

5

PHYC30080 Optics & Lasers Spring

5

Stage 3 Options - B)MIN1OF:
If not taken in Stage 2 students MUST TAKE ACM20030. If ACM20030 had been taken in Stage 2, students MUST TAKE PHYC30080 in Stage 3.
     
Stage 3 Options - C)MIN0OF:
Students are required to complete 50 programme credits (cores/options) in Stage 3. Additional Option modules may be selected from the list below instead of Elective modules to complete Stage 3. Students wishing to take PHYC40110 Medical Physics in stage 4 must take PHYC30090 in stage 3.
     
ACM30220 Partial Differential Equations Autumn

5

STAT20070 Data Modelling for Science Autumn

5

PHYC30090 Nuclear Physics Spring

5

Stage 3 Options - C)MIN0OF:
Students are required to complete 50 programme credits (cores/options) in Stage 3. Additional Option modules may be selected from the list below instead of Elective modules to complete Stage 3. Students wishing to take PHYC40110 Medical Physics in stage 4 must take PHYC30090 in stage 3.
     
Stage 4 Core Modules
     
PHYC40600 Physics with Astronomy and Space Science Laboratory II 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

15

PHYC40890 Astronomy Field Trip (10) 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

10

PHYC30050 Condensed Matter Physics Autumn

5

PHYC40020 Applied Quantum Mechanics Autumn

5

PHYC40080 High Energy Particle Physics Autumn

5

PHYC30090 Nuclear Physics Spring

5

PHYC40030 Galaxies, Observational Cosmology & the Interstellar Medium Spring

5

Stage 4 Core Modules
     
Stage 4 Options - A)2 OF:
Students must take 2 option modules from the list below. If not taken in Stage 3, students MUST TAKE PHYC30080 as one of their option modules in Stage 4.
     
ACM40090 Riemannian Differential Geometry Autumn

5

PHYC40120 General Relativity & Cosmology Autumn

5

PHYC40470 Computational Biophysics and Nanoscale Simulations Autumn

5

PHYC40930 Ultrafast Soft X-ray Photonics Autumn

5

ACM30200 Mathematical Fluid Dynamics I Spring

5

ACM40750 Gen Relativity & Black Holes Spring

5

PHYC40110 Medical Physics (Selected Topics) Spring

5

PHYC40200 Quantum Theory of Condensed Matter Spring

5

PHYC40210 Applied Optics Spring

5

PHYC40360 Theoretical Astrophysics Spring

5

PHYC40650 Advanced Statistical Physics Spring

5

PHYC40800 Quantum Field Theory Spring

5

Stage 4 Options - A)2 OF:
Students must take 2 option modules from the list below. If not taken in Stage 3, students MUST TAKE PHYC30080 as one of their option modules in Stage 4.
     
Stage 4 Options - B)MIN0OF:
If not taken in Stage 3 students MUST TAKE PHYC30080
     
PHYC30080 Optics & Lasers Spring

5


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