FYS4600 – Space Physics and Technology

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

This course provides an overview of the plasma environment around the Earth, its dynamic processes, and describes how we can use satellites and sounding rockets to study phenomena and processes. The course introduces fundamental concepts like the solar wind, the coupling of magnetic flux, the Dungey cycle, and explains the coupling between the Sun and the magnetosphere, the ionosphere, and the upper atmosphere. In addition, the course gives an insight into the interaction between plasmas and satellites/sounding rockets and sheds light on the challenges associated with measurements made on board satellites and rockets.

Learning outcome

After having completed this course, you:

  • possess a theoretical background allowing you to describe basic plasma parameters, principles of plasma dynamics, and selected types of waves.
  • know the physical processes controlling the coupling between the solar wind and the Earth’s magnetosphere/ionosphere, as well as the global dynamics of the upper polar atmosphere.
  • are able to explain how space weather phenomena impact infrastructures on Earth and in Space, in particular for communication and navigation systems.
  • know how to analyze data from satellites and sounding rockets, and how to use coordinate transformation in this context.
  • have the knowledge necessary for advanced studies within space and plasma physics, including the use of ground-based and spacecraft data.
  • are able to give a summary of several relevant scientific articles.

Admission to the course

Students admitted at UiO must apply for courses in Studentweb. Students enrolled in other Master's Degree Programmes can, on application, be admitted to the course if this is cleared by their own study programme.

Nordic citizens and applicants residing in the Nordic countries may apply to take this course as a single course student.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures for international applicants.

Overlapping courses


The course is given over an entire semester with the following teaching per week:

  • 4 hours of lecture
  • 2 hours of exercises

This course has 5 mandatory assignments. You must also submit a summary of several scientific articles chosen by the course coordinator. In order to take the final oral examination, a minimum of 3 out of 5 mandatory assignments must be approved, and the summary of scientific articles must be approved by the course coordinator.

Regulations for mandatory assignments.


  • Home exam in the form of a project assignment, which counts 30 % towards the final grade.
  • Fiinal oral exam which counts 70 % towards the final grade.

Both the project assignment and the final oral examination must be passed in order to get a final grade in the course.

This course has mandatory assignments that must be approved before you can take the final oral exam.

When writing your exercises make sure to familiarize yourself with the rules for use of sources and citations. Breach of these rules may lead to suspicion of attempted cheating.

It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses: FYS3600 – Space Physics and Technology

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed during the final oral exam.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed exam at the beginning of the next semester.

New examinations are offered at the beginning of the next semester for students who do not successfully complete the exam during the previous semester.

We do not offer a re-scheduled exam for students who withdraw during the exam.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) July 6, 2022 9:13:14 AM

Facts about this course


If the course is offered, a minimum of four students is required for ordinary lectures to take place. If less than four students participate, an exam will be given, but one should not expect ordinary teaching.

Teaching language