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Graduate Program in Earth & Space Science


The following graduate courses are offered according to need. Not all courses will be offered in any one year. The coursework program for each student is worked out between the student and the supervisory committee early in each academic year.

Earth & Space Science 5010 3.0: Directed Readings
This course is directed by a graduate faculty member and can cover any topic not covered by other courses in the current calendar year. The exact scope is agreed upon between the faculty member and the student in advance and submitted to the graduate director. Students can take up to one reading course as part of their degree requirement.

Earth & Space Science 5020 3.0: Time Series and Spectral Analysis
Treatment of discrete sampled data by linear optimum Wiener filtering, minimum error energy deconvolution, autocorrelation and spectral density estimation, discrete Fourier transforms and frequency domain filtering and the Fast Fourier Transform Algorithm.
Integrated with the undergraduate course Science Earth and Atmospheric Science 4020 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5040 3.0: Molecular Spectroscopy
This course covers the essentials of diatomic molecular spectroscopy. It emphasizes the concepts of spectral intensities in emission and absorption, the Franck-Condon principle and molecular transition probabilities and how they control the intensity profiles of molecular spectra. It reviews the principles of diagnostic interpretation of molecular space spectra in terms of species concentrations and energy exchange mechanisms taking place in remote regions of the atmosphere, space and astrophysical locations. Methods of realistic syntheses of spectral intensity profiles are reviewed.
Same as Chemistry 5040 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5050 3.0: Space Geodynamics
The determination of the gravity field and figure of the Earth by space measurement techniques. Included are the external gravity field of the Earth, orbital dynamics of artificial satellites, internal equilibrium figure of the Earth, and rotational dynamics of the Earth.

Earth & Space Science 5060 3.0: Aeronomy
The physics and chemistry of the earth’s atmosphere and factors which affect composition, density, and temperature as a function of altitude are discussed in terms of the ionosphere, the aurora, and the airglow. A review is made of the composition and the photochemistry of other planetary atmospheres in terms of reaction kinetics of atmospheric processes.
Same as Chemistry 5060 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5160 3.0: Spectral Imaging of the Atmosphere
This course involves the basic properties of optical radiation and its detection and analysis. Fourier methods are used to study interferometric spectroscopy using prisms, gratings and various types of interferometers. These concepts are then applied to observations of the atmosphere, from simple photometry through to Doppler imaging.
Students may not receive credit for both Earth & Space Science 5160 3.0 and Physics & Astronomy 5170 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5180 3.0: Physical Principles of Remote Sensing
This course reviews the physical problems encountered in remote sensing the properties of the terrestrial surface from airborne or satellite-borne sensors. Topics treated include the solar Fraunhofer spectrum, atmospheric absorption phenomena, the physical aspects of the albedo, the reflection spectrum of surfaces, characteristics of sensors, data handling and the LANDSAT-program.

Earth & Space Science 5190 3.0: Earth and Planetary Physics I
Physics of the earth’s interior, seismology, geomagnetism, heat-flow and thermal history of the earth, earth tides, rotation of the earth, gravity field paleomagnetism, plate tectonics and continental drift, structure of planetary interiors, spin-orbit coupling of planets, general properties of the solar system.

Earth & Space Science 5200 3.0: Atmospheric Dynamics
The theory and behaviour of Rossby baroclinic and internal gravity waves in the atmosphere including their origin, structure and propagation. The role of these waves in the large-scale dynamics of the troposphere and stratosphere is studied.

Earth & Space Science 5201 3.0: Storms and Weather Systems

This course examines, time permitting, the following storms and weather systems: development of high and low pressure systems, airmasses and fronts; extraopical cyclones forming east of the Rocky Mountains; extraopical cyclones forming along the east and Gulf coasts; freezing precipitation and ice storms; lake effect snowstorms; cold waves; Great Plains blizzards; mountain snowstorms; mountain windstorms; thunderstorms; tornadoes; hailstorms; lightning; downbursts; El Nino, La Nina and the southern oscillation; tropical cyclones; floods, drought and heat waves; and climate change.

Earth & Space Science 5202 3.0: Transport and Chemistry of Atmospheric Trace Gases
A study of the processes that affect the composition of trace species in the atmosphere and the methods used to include these in numerical models. Included are emission sources, resolved and parameterized transport by large and small scale convection, deposition, photochemistry and particle microphysics. Box models, and multidimensional models are examined. The course includes “hands-on” modelling experience and analyses of 3D atmospheric data sets.
Same as Chemistry 5720 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5203 3.0: Turbulence and Diffusion
Laminar and turbulent flows, hydrodynamic stability and transition; wind and temperature profiles in the atmospheric boundary-layer, Monin-Obukhov and Planetary Boundary Layer similarity theories. Turbulence spectra, local isotropy, the inertial subrange and Kolmogoroff hypotheses; turbulent diffusion from atmospheric sources.
Same as Physics & Astronomy 6120 3.0.

Earth & Space Science 5204 3.0: Numerical Weather Prediction
The development of computational techniques for the solution of problems in atmospheric dynamics; the construction of numerical models for the prediction of weather.

Earth & Space Science 5205 3.0: Cloud Physics and Radar Meteorology
Thermodynamics of cloud processes; buoyance and convection; weather radar; storms and associated precipitation; cloud droplet formation and growth of ice crystals; snow, graupel and hail.

Earth & Space Science 5210 3.0: Wind Energy
Large wind turbines provide a significant fraction of our electrical power. How do they work and how much energy can they extract from the wind? How can we select sites, design wind farms and deal with integration and environmental concerns?

Earth & Space Science 5230 3.0: Remote Sensing of Atmospheres
A study of the theory, instrumentation and applications of remote sensing methods of terrestrial and planetary atmospheres from space platforms.

Earth and Space Science 5260 3.0: Numerical Climate Modelling
The Earth’s climate and general circulation of the atmosphere are described. Climate models and the long term stability of the Earth’s climate are visited. The anthropogenic impact on the climate due to CO2 and other gases is addressed.

Earth and Space Science 5400 3.0: Geographical Information Systems (GIS) and Advanced Spatial Analysis
Project-oriented geomatics course using GIS techniques (weights of evidence, statistics, fuzzy logic, Fractal/multifractal and geostatistics) for processing and integrating diverse geoscience data. Database management and spatial modeling with macro language programming in ARC/INFO.
Integrated with the undergraduate course Earth and Space Science and Engineering 4600 3.0.

Earth and Space Science 5410 3.0: Advanced Satellite Positioning
An overview of satellite positioning methods leads to GPS satellite orbits, signals, propagation, measurement errors, and observables. Topics include GPS models for various distances, integer ambiguity resolution, integration of GPS with GLOSNASS and INS.

Earth and Space Science 5420 3.0: Advanced Geospatial Information Technology
This course is designed to help students understand the latest research and development of geospatial information and communication technology (GeoICT). The course covers topics in advanced spatial positioning, imaging, remote sensing, and advanced geospatial algorithms such as open GIS, internet GIS, 3D GIS, etc.
Earth & Space Science MSc Research Exercise.
No course credit.

Earth and Space Science 5430 3.0: Advanced Optimal Estimation Theory & Application

Reliability analysis in least squares, variance component estimation in least squares; linear dynamic systems, optimal linear filtering, optimal linear smoothers, correlated system and measurement noise processes and coloured noises, implementation methods and practical considerations, applications. Introduction to nonlinear approaches.

Earth & Space Science 6300 3.0 or 6300 6.0: Special Topics
Directed readings on topics of interest and need to an individual student will be offered from time to time as circumstances require.

Earth & Space Science 6030A 3.0, 6030B 3.0: MSc Research Evaluation
Progress in research is assessed annually as described (see MSc Course Requirements).

Earth & Space Science 7030A 3.0, 7030B 3.0, 7030C 3.0, 7030D 3.0, 7030E 3.0, 7030F 3.0: PhD Research Evaluation
Progress in research is assessed annually as described (see PhD Course Requirements).