Climate & Space interests bridge both engineering and science and prepare students to answer a growing demand for expertise in atmospheric, climate and space science. Climate & Space programs focus on the description of atmospheric characteristics and phenomena on the Earth and other planets and the interrelationships between the Earth and the Sun. Because of the integrated nature of the program, Climate & Space students have an extensive background in atmospheric and space science, weather and climate, and the engineering of complex and highly reliable space systems and instrumentation.

Climate & Space students are prepared for positions in space engineering, climate, meteorology, and space science research and teaching, environmental assessment, resource management, risk management, or in one of the growing number of fields interested in climate change. Climate & Space has actively participated in the Nation’s space program since its inception. For more than 70 years, Climate and Space Sciences and Engineering faculty members have been at the forefront of many engineering and theoretical breakthroughs. In 1946, a probe was deployed on a V-2 rocket to measure electrons in the upper atmosphere. In 1956, Climate & Space researchers were studying atmospheric pollution by aeroallergens, penetration of particulates into buildings, dynamic wind loading of structures, and industrial air pollution. Climate & Space was involved with NASA’s Pioneer Venus and Dynamic Explorer Program from its inception in the early 1970s to its completion in the 1990s. Today, Climate & Space researchers are involved in many space missions exploring Mercury, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn as well as new initiatives in climate change.

Climate & Space offers high quality academic programs that combine extensive hands-on experience at all levels with a strong emphasis on the theoretical and applied aspects of a student’s area of concentration.

Atmospheric scientists are focused on the weather and climate of the Earth, with topics ranging from fundamental research of basic processes to preparing for adaptation to climate change. The focus of planetary/space scientists includes the effects of space weather on Earth, planetary atmospheres and environments, and the construction of satellite-platform instruments for observation of the Earth-atmosphere-ocean system.

Department Administration

Department Chair
James A. Slavin, Ph.D. 
1517 Space Research Laboratory

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