GEO-DEEP9509 – Interactions between Star-Planet Couples (from Sun-Earth to Star-Exoplanet)

Course content

The Special Topics course series explores state-of-the-art principles, methods, and techniques within selected topics in DEEP research school themes. In this course, we will bridge topics from the realm of astrophysics and geosciences. We intend to train participants in the fundamental workings of stars, the Sun, planets and exoplanets.

Our knowledge of Earth and Sun is far more detailed than of other solar system bodies or planets orbiting other stars. Nevertheless, observations and numerical simulations allow us to use predictions validated for the Earth and Sun when discussing the dynamics and interaction between star-planet couples.

The course aims at familiarising participants with current state-of-the-art models of the different objects and models that prescribe their interactions (e.g. solar wind, flares, stellar activities onto bodies with and without a magnetic field) and how these compare with spacecraft and telescope observations. This interaction is known to have changed dramatically through time for the Sun-Earth couple, more specifically solar effects on planets'/Earth's climate system (e.g., Milankovitch cycle due to long-term insolation variations).

We will also address on which timescales solar activity modulates the climate on Earth and at which timescales planetary activity or human action dominates.

Learning outcome

After completing the course, the candidate will

  • have fundamental knowledge of the Sun, stars, Earth, planets and exoplanets
  • be able to study these objects based on numerical simulations and observations
  • be able to describe the interactions between star planet couples
  • be able to model interactions and effects on the climate system (e.g. atmospheres)
  • be able to distinguish planetary atmosphere and climate variations related to the activity of the star, the planet, and for the Earth due to life

Admission to the course

The course is open to PhD candidates enrolled in in the Norwegian Research School for Dynamics and Evolution of Earth and Planets (DEEP).

Registration to the course is done by filling out an online application form.

PhD candidates who are admitted to other education institutions than UiO must apply for visiting PhD status. This is done through the same online application form. Applicants must be able to present original documentation on request.

There is no upper limit on the number of participants.

Only students admitted to the course may sit the examination.


The course centers on a one-week session (about 40 h), which includes lectures and practical.

Course literature will be pre-selected and accessible to course participants in due time prior to the course.

Preparatory work before and after the course week will be mandatory to be able to sit the final exam, this could include giving a short presentation on a prescribed topic during the course week.


  • A home exam counts 100% towards the final grade.
  • A mandatory presentation must be approved before you can sit the final exam.

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

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a pass/fail scale. 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 examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass, the original examination.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) Sep. 27, 2022 7:14:27 PM

Facts about this course

Teaching language