Research course

Comets and Asteroids

Institution
Open University · School of Physical Sciences
Qualifications
PhDMPhil

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:1 (or equivalent) in a physical science subject

Months of entry

October

Course content

Asteroids and comets are the residual material left from the formation of planets in the inner and outer Solar System respectively. Unlike the planets, many retain material relatively unaltered since their formation 4.6 billion years ago. Their current dynamical and physical properties provide information on their formation and evolution. Our group in the School of Physical Sciences has developed instrumentation for a number of comet missions including Giotto, Stardust and Rosetta, and we are currently involved in the Hayabusa 2 and OSIRIS-REx asteroid sample return missions.

We use a variety of ground- and space-based telescopes to study the properties of the nuclei and dust production of comets as well as physical properties of asteroids. Our world-leading Advanced Thermophysical Model provides insight into the importance of thermal processing of small Solar System bodies. Postgraduate students are involved in all aspects of these studies.

Fees and funding

Please see The Open University website

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PhD
    full time
    48 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    72 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification
  • MPhil
    part time
    24 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    15 months
    • Distance learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Name
Administrative support
Email
stem-sps-phd-admin@open.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)1908 858253