For a list of campus courses click here.
The following courses are tentatively scheduled to be offered as part of the online program. Note that courses 593, 996, 997, 998 are available every semester and require department approval prior to registration---contact Bev Fetter.
Note: Space Studies online courses are sometimes difficult to differentiate in the Campus Connection registration system. Class numbers are provided below, which are specific to the online section of each course.
- In Campus Connection, locate the course you want.
- By clicking on either section that is highlighted in blue, the class details will provide the information indicating an online course.
- The location code lists “Space Studies Distance Program” and meeting information as “UND Online.”
On campus courses would list the location code as “University of North Dakota” and provide the meeting information such as “Ryan Hall Room 111 Days and Times: TuTh 9:30 am-10:45 am.”
(Campus Connection Class #)
SpSt 517 Human Spaceflight Systems(9078)
Technical Course; Sub-discipline: Space Engineering
This course is designed to introduce students to human space systems. The course uses both an engineering and a historical approach to human spaceflight systems covering all manned spacecraft up to today, plus individual subsystems necessary for human occupation. By the end of the course, students will: 1. Understand the engineering and science concepts related to human spaceflight, 2. Understand the major technologies required for human spaceflight, 3. Apply the systems engineering process to a human spaceflight mission: a. Describe the interactions among the elements of a space mission, b. Describe the interactions among all spacecraft subsystems, c. Document design decisions and analysis in a clear and concise manner.
No textbooks – refer to syllabus for more details. (Confirmed for Summer 2018)de Leon, Pablo firstname.lastname@example.org
Chat Schedule: Tuesdays at 7:00 pm Central Daylights Savings Time
SpSt 545 Space and the Environment(7370)
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Policy
This course is an advanced graduate-level review of international relations theories as applied to the international implications of global commons. The course introduces the concept of global commons, examines the theories and practices concerning management of global commons, and analyzes the global commons dealing with the problems of collective action as applied to global environmental change and the uses of outer space.
Relevant academic background in the policy, law, science, or technology related to global environmental problems is an advantage.
Required Textbook: (Confirmed for Summer 2018)
Environmental Policy: New Directions for the Twenty-First Century by Norman Vig & Michael Kraft, 9th Edition. Publisher: CQ Press. ISBN-13: 978-1483352589 (Paperback)Dodge, Michael email@example.com
Chat Schedule: Mondays at 7:00 pm Central Daylights Savings Time
SpSt 570 Adv Topics in SpSt: Planetary Industrial Operations(7372)
Cross-listed: Technical/Sub-discipline Space Engineering; Social/Sub-discipline Management
This course investigates the potential for industrial space activities, with analysis of the possibilities and the barriers. Key areas include drivers influencing space industrial operations, potential locations and products to be mined or manufactured, and adapting terrestrial industry to operate in the space environment. Discussion of potential operations will be used to illustrate the challenges and opportunities of planetary industrial operations. As this remains a speculative area of study, creative and critical thinking will be emphasized. The vision for this course is that you will be actively engaged in the analysis and discussion of topics and issues relevant and critical to the future of off-Earth industrial enterprises.
Objectives: The main objectives of this course are to provide you with an understanding of the principles, theories, and drivers of industrial operations in space. Familiarity with the concepts learned in this course will enable you to effectively participate in the decision-making processes necessary to develop space industrial operations. Specifically, you should be able to answer the following questions:
- What are the potential resources or desired products of space industrial operations?
- What are the current drivers for these operations?
- What are advantages and challenges of performing these operations in space?
- How might these business concepts go from theory to reality?
- What entities are interested in these operations, and which are leading the charge?
No textbooks required or recommended for this course for Summer 2018. Refer to course syllabus for further information.Casler, James firstname.lastname@example.org
Chat Schedule: Wednesdays at 7:00 pm Central Daylights Savings Time
SpSt 500 Intro to Orbital Mechanics(11926)
Technical course; Sub-discipline: Space Engineering
This course introduces students who have a modest background in either mathematics or physics to the problems faced everyday by orbital analysts as they track the 7,000 satellites which orbit the Earth. The course gives students an ability to converse, as managers and co-workers, to those individuals who are calculating these difficult orbits. This appreciation is important in both the civilian and military sides of the space program.
An educational background that includes trigonometry and vector algebra is strongly recommended.
Required Textbook: (Textbook info NOT YET confirmed for Fall 2018)
Understanding Space: An Introduction to Astronautics plus Website by Sellers, et al. 3rd Edition, 2007. ISBN-13: 978-0077230302.Fevig, Ron email@example.com
SpSt 501 Survey of Space Studies I(9160)
SpSt 501 is the first course in a two-course sequence (along with SpSt 502) that introduces new students to essential knowledge that will be necessary to successfully complete their M.S. degree in Space Studies. SpSt 501 consists of the following six modules: 1) space history, 2) space policy, 3) space law, 4) planetary and space sciences, 5) space life sciences and human factors, and 6) Earth remote sensing. All modules contain foundational information that will give students the basic knowledge and skills necessary to achieve a broad understanding of the multi- and inter-disciplinary nature of space studies that can be applied in later courses, such as Capstone; and knowledge that facilitates thesis and other specialized types of instruction and research. Course content in SpSt 501 will also be used to assess student learning at the end of their M.S. program via the Comprehensive Examination. Students are expected to master and understand course content, be able to apply course content as appropriate, and demonstrate their understanding of course content prior to graduation.
Required textbook: None (Textbook info confirmed for Fall 2018)de Leon, Pablo firstname.lastname@example.org
SpSt 515 Human Factors in Space(18792)
Technical course; Sub-disciplines: Human Factors or Applications
A review of the major stresses experienced by humans on entering the new and alien environment of space. Examples will be taken from the psychological and physiological impacts experienced by U.S. and Soviet crews with emphasis on longer flights. How to avoid and/or overcome these stresses will be examined as an essential and growing need in the future development and settlement of the space frontier.
Required Textbooks: (CONFIRMED FOR FALL 2017)
Fundamentals of Space Life Sciences by Susanne Churchill. 1997 edition. Publisher: Krieger Publishing. ISBN-10: 0-89464-051-8.
Living Aloft: Human Requirements for Extended Space Flight by Connors, Harrison and Akins. Publisher: NASA. Free download from NASA's History office available at http://www.hq.nasa.gov/office/pao/History/SP-483/cover.htm.
Man-System Integration Standards. Publisher: NASA. Free download available at http://msis.jsc.nasa.gov/
Bold Endeavors: Lessons from Polar and Space Exploration by Jack Stuster. 1996 edition. Publisher: Naval Institute Press. ISBN-13: 978-1557507495 (hardcover).Nelson, Travis
SpSt 521 The Planet Mars(9235)
Technical course; Sub-discipline: Planetary Science
This course provides an in-depth review of the present state of our knowledge of Mars. Topics to be covered include: the origin and evolution of the planet, the surface geology and geological processes, the geophysical properties of the Martian interior, the origin and evolution of the Martian atmosphere, the present and past climates of Mars, the Martian moons, and the possibility of past or present life on Mars. The American and Soviet/Russian Mars exploration programs are reviewed and the course incorporates the most recent results from spacecraft missions such as Mars Global Surveyor, Mars Odyssey, the Mars Exploration Rovers, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and Mars Science Laboratory (Curiosity Rover). Potential future manned and unmanned missions are also discussed.
Required Textbook: No textbooks required or recommended for this course. Access to free materials will be provided. (Updated for Fall 2018)Gaffey, Mike email@example.com
SpSt 526 Astronomical and Spacecraft Instrumentation(16887)
Technical Course; Sub-discipline: Applications or Space Engineering
This course will concentrate on instrument design, operation, and the resulting data products generated by ground- and space-based astronomical observatories, as well as common instrumentation used in NASA scientific solar system spacecraft. Key goals for this course include gaining a solid understanding of instrumental principles of operation, the types of raw data that are generated, and the types of data reduction processes that lead to interpretable data. The course will include an investigation of different types of spectrographs and spectroscopy data products, solar instrumentation (ground- and space-based), terrestrial and Jovian spacecraft orbiter/flyby instrumentation, terrestrial planet rover and lander instrumentation, and extra-solar system astrophysical instrumentation. Students will have the opportunity to examine, reduce, and interpret select data sets.
Prerequisites: SpSt 425 and MATH 165 or consent of instructor
Required Textbook: (Textbook information confirmed for Fall 2018)
SpSt 541 Management of Space Enterprises(9238)
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Management
This course investigates the management of space organizations. These include organizations that are public and private, R&D and operations, profit and non-profit. You will learn the basics of management theory, the history of systems management, and the technical issues that must be considered in the management of space R&D and operations.
- Role of management
- Management approaches
- Decision theory
- Organizational structure
- Organizational change
- Organizational culture
- Organizational behavior
- Strategic decision making
- Controlling and Management
- Human resource management
- Risk management
- Technical management
- Project management
- Management of civil space organizations
- Management of large space business
- Management of small space business
Required Textbook: (confirmed for fall 2016)
Applied Project Management for Space Systems by Chesley, Larson, McQuade and Menrad. Publisher: Learning Solutions. ISBN-13: 978-0073408859 (paperback).
The Secret of Apollo: Systems Management in American and European Space Programs by former UND Space Studies Professor Stephen B. Johnson, PHD. Publisher: John Hopkins University Press. ISBN-13: 978-0801868986 (hardcover).Casler, James firstname.lastname@example.org
SpSt 555 Military Space Programs(9239)
Social course; Sub-discipline: Policy or History
An introduction to the military uses of space by the United States, Russia, and other nations. The course introduces ballistic missiles, anti-ballistic missile and anti-satellite systems, space-based reconnaissance and intelligence-gathering, communications, navigation, acquisition, and military space treaties.
Previously offered as SpSt 555 Strategic Implications of Space. Do not repeat.
Course Outline Spring 2017
- Introduction to Military Space—Leaders and Theorists
- Post World War II Policy and Weapons
- The Cold War and Military Space Programs
- Reconnaissance Satellites
- U.S. vs. USSR Space Race
- Arms Control
- Strategic Warning and Strategic Defense
- Space Warfare Desert Storm to the Present
- Space Power Theory
Required Texts (Textbook info confirmed for Fall 2018))
Toward a Theory of Space Power, Charles D. Lutes and Peter L. Hays (eds.), with Vincent A Manzo, Lisa M. Yambrick, and M. Elaine Bunn. Publisher: Washington, DC: National Defense University, 2011. Available free on the web http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a546585.pdf
Beyond Horizons: A Half Century of Air Force Space Leadership by David N. Spires, (Washington: GPO, 1998). Reprinted by University Press of the Pacific 2002. ASIN: B003HKQH66 (paperback) Available free on the web http://www.afhso.af.mil/shared/media/document/AFD-110125-038.pdf
Harnessing The Heavens: National Defense Through Space Paul G. Gillespie and Grant T. Weller (eds.) Chicago: Imprint, 2008. ISBN-13: 978-1-879176-45-4 (paperback).Kugler, David
SpSt 560 Space Politics and Policy(9244)
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Policy or History
This course serves as a graduate-level introduction to the field of Public Policy as applied to Space Policy. The course surveys the evolution of Space Policy at several levels of analysis including context, political actors and institutions, political processes, and policy outcomes, and assesses the symbiotic relationships between policy, technology, and science.
2 Required textbooks: (Textbook info pending changes for fall 2018)
John F. Kennedy and the Race to the Moon by John M. Logsdon, 2010 Edition Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN: 978-1-137-34649-0
....The Heavens and the Earth: A Political History of the Space Age by Walter A. McDougall, 1997 Johns Hopkins Paperback Edition. ISBN: 0-8018-5748-1
This New Ocean by William E Burrows, 1st Edition 1998, Modern Library. ISBN: 0-375-75485-7Dodge, Michael email@example.com
SpSt 425 Observational Astronomy
Technical Course; Sub-discipline: Applications
This course provides an introduction to observational astronomy and includes three segments: basic observing techniques and astronomical equipment (telescopes, CCDs); visual observing and the characteristics of the night sky; astrometric and photometric observing, data reduction, and interpretations; and image processing and color imaging techniques. Students will learn to operate a remotely controllable Internet telescope and CCD camera. A broadband Internet connection is recommended. Night observing is required.
Prerequisites: Physics 110; competent algebra and trigonometry skills; knowledge of fundamental calculus is helpful, but not required. SPST 420 and/or SPST 520 are recommended.
Additional course fee of $100 assessed to cover required software.
This course may also require additional software to be purchased after the class starts. Ordering instructions will be posted on the class syllabus.
Graduate students registering for this course may require a special permission number obtained from Bev Fetter to override a missing undergraduate prerequiste
Required Textbooks: (CONFIRMED FOR FALL 2017)
(1) To Measure the Sky: An Introduction to Observational Astronomy, 2nd Edition. Frederick R. Chromey, Vassar College, New York, 2016. ISBN: 9781107572560 (paperback).
(2) Handbook of CCD Astronomy, 2nd Edition. Steve B. Howell, WIYN/NOAO, 2006. ISBN: 9780521617628 (paperback).
Fieber-Beyer, Sherry firstname.lastname@example.org
SpSt 502 Survey of Space Studies II
SpSt 502 is the second course in a two-course sequence (along with SpSt 501) that introduces new students to essential knowledge that will be necessary to successfully complete their M.S. degree in Space Studies. SpSt 502 consists of the following five modules: 1) space mission design (two modules), 2) orbital mechanics, 3) launch vehicles and propulsion, and 4) robotic spacecraft instrumentation. All modules contain foundational information that will give students the basic knowledge and skills necessary to achieve a broad understanding of the multi- and inter-disciplinary nature of space studies; knowledge that can be applied in later courses, such as Capstone; and knowledge that facilitates thesis and other specialized types of instruction and research. Course content in SpSt 502 will also be used to assess student learning at the end of their M.S. program via the Comprehensive Examination. Students are expected to master and understand course content, be able to apply course content as appropriate, and demonstrate their understanding of course content prior to graduation.
Required textbook: No Textbooks required or recommended (Confirmed for Spring 2018)de Leon, Pablo email@example.com
SpSt 520 Asteroids, Meteorites & Comets
Technical course; Sub-discipline: Planetary Science
The small bodies of the solar system provide clues to the origin and early history of the solar system. The planets and larger moons have all been chemically transformed erasing their records of their formation. By contrast, many asteroids, meteorites and comets are essentially unmodified from the time of their origin 4.5 billion years ago and thus preserve a record of the formation epoch. Each of these classes of objects is investigated separately, and relationships between them are examined. Implications for impact hazards and for extraterrestrial resources are also explored. The results of recent and current spacecraft missions to asteroids (e.g., Galileo, NEAR, DAWN, Hayabusa, Rosetta, OSIRIS-Rex, etc.) and to comets (e.g. Giotto, Vega 1, Stardust, Deep Impact, Rosetta, etc.) are reviewed.
- Introduction to Course / Overview of Topics
- Basics of Mineralogy and Geochemistry
- Introduction to Meteorites
- Introduction to Asteroids
- Basics Principles of Orbits
- Overview and History of Meteoritics
- Iron and Stony-iron Meteorites
- Asteroid Sizes, Rotations and Families
- Asteroid Surface Compositions
- Chondritic Parent Bodies
- Achondrite Parent Bodies
- Iron and Stony-Iron Parent Bodies
- Diversity of Asteroids and Meteorite Parent Bodies
- Delivering Meteorites from Asteroids
- Gaspra, Ida, Mathilde, and Eros
- Importance of Asteroids and Meteorites
- Compositions of Comets
- Origin and Evolution of Comets
- Interplanetary Dust
- Meteor Showers
- Lunar and Martian Meteorites, Tektites & Impacts
- Comets, Asteroids and the Origin of the Solar System
- Comets, Asteroids and the Origin of Life
- Summary and Overview
Required Textbooks: (Confirmed for summer 2017)
Meteorites and Their Parent Bodies (2nd ed.) by H. Y. McSween, Jr. Publisher: Cambridge. ISBN: 0-521-58751-4 (paperback).
The New Solar System (4th ed.) by Beatty, Petersen and Chaikin Publisher: Cambridge. ISBN: 0-521-64183-7 (hardcover). NOTE: The pages of this book can be downloaded---somewhat awkwardly--following instructions provided on the class website. Currently, this book is out of print but relatively inexpensive copies can be obtained from a variety of internet book dealers.Gaffey, Mike firstname.lastname@example.org
SpSt 540 Space Economics and Commerce
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Management
A study of the economic aspects of space activities, with analysis of the possibilities and the barriers. Key areas include launch services, satellite communications, remote sensing, microgravity materials processing, and interaction with the government. Global competition against subsidies or government-sponsored entities is examined.
- Why economics?
- Review of relevant economic theory
- Relationships of space industry with economic environment
- Economic impact of commercial space on U.S. economy
- Government space budgets
- Structure of selected space industries
- Regulatory issues
- International effects
- Insurance in support of space industry
- Economic analyses
- Engineering economic considerations
- Financial effects of quality and reliability
- Cost estimation of space systems (CER)
- Life cycle costing
- Economics of Apollo, Faster-Better-Cheaper (FBC), Constellation
- Launch costing
- Investment and entrepreneurship
- Economics of New Space and space tourism
Required Textbook: None. See course syllabus for further details. (confirmed for Spring 2017)Casler, James email@example.com
SpSt 552 History of Astronomy and Cosmology
Social Course; Sub-discipline: History
This course investigates the history of human endeavors to understand the stars, planets, and cosmos as a whole from a scientific perspective. It covers the early observations and theories of the Babylonians and Greeks through the European Scientific Revolution, and finally to the development of astrophysics and modern cosmology using space vehicles.
Typical Course Outline
|1||1 & 6||Prehistoric and Pre-Columbian|
|2||2 & 3||Ancient Egypt & Mesopotamia|
|3||4||Greek & Roman|
|4||5 & 7||China, India, Japan, Persia|
|5||8 & 9||Islam|
|6||10||Medieval & Early Renaissance Europe|
|7||11 & 12||Copernicus, Tycho & Kepler|
|8||13 & 14||The New Astronomy|
|9||15||Precision and Astrophysics|
|10||16||Galaxies, Stars, Atoms|
|14||19||Space Astronomy-Stars & Galaxies|
Cosmos: An Illustrated History of Astronomy and Cosmology by John North, University of Chicago Press, 2008. ISBN: 978-0226594415 (paperback).Dodge, Michael firstname.lastname@example.org
SpSt 575 Remote Sensing Law & Policy
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Law
This course focuses on the evolving laws, policies, and institutions that have long-term ramifications for earth observations. Some topics addressed are the United Nations Principles on Remote Sensing; the United Kingdom's 1984 National Remote Sensing Policy; the Montreal Protocol; and, the U.S. Land Remote Sensing Policy Act of 1992. Ground segment institutions considered are the Landsat Ground Stations Operations Working Group and the Global Land 1-KM AVHRR Project. Remote sensing litigation that has begun to address various applications of remote sensing will also be considered. Cases include Dow vs. U.S. and EOSAT vs. NASA and NOAA.
Unmanned Aircraft in the National Airspace: Critical Issues, Technology and the Law by Donna A. Dulo, Editor, 2015, 1st Edition. Publisher: ABA Publishing. ISBN 13: 978-1-62722-998-2 (paperback).
(Confirmed for summer 2016)
SpSt 527 Extraterrestrial Resources
Technical Course; Sub-discipline: Planetary Science
This course focuses on the inventory, accessibility, acquisition, processing and utilization of extraterrestrial resources (space resources) from celestial bodies such as the Moon, Mars, asteroids, and comets. Consideration will be given to extraterrestrial resources for in situ utilization (such as a Lunar or Martian base), for space operations (such as supporting large scale near-Earth activities or a human Mars mission), and for terrestrial markets. The course will focus on the interplay between the scientific, technical, and economic aspects of acquiring and utilizing such resources. The course will also explore some of the legal and political ramifications and limitations of claiming and recovering space resources.
- Introduction and Course Structure
- Why consider extraterrestrial resources?
- The Way the Future Was - History of Space Resources
- Getting there and back - Orbital Mechanics
- Inventory of Space Resources: Lunar Geology
- Inventory of Space Resources: Meteorites
- Inventory of Space Resources: Asteroids & NEOs
- Inventory of Space Resources: Mars Geology
- Inventory of Space Resources: Martian Moons
- Shuttle tanks / “Dead” satellites / Space debris
- Resource utilization: History as a guide to future
- Demand / Markets for Space Resources
- Propulsion options - Chemical / Ion / Nuclear
- Propulsion options - Solar Sail / “Mass driver” / Exotic
- Mining and Extracting Raw Materials – General
- Mining and Extracting Space Resources by Object
- Processing Space Resources – General
- Case Study: Propellant production – Lunar
- Case Study: Propellant production – Mars
- Mars Propellant Production: Implications for Martian activities
- Asteroid Space Mining - Options, Prospects and Products
- Future Space Activities: Demand? / Pricing? / Where?
- Infrastructure - Minimum & Optimum
- Infrastructure - Minimum & optimum
- Resources and Hazard Abatement
- ET Resource Implementation: Social and Cultural Aspects
- Summary and Review
Required Textbook: None. Students will be directed to online readings in the course syllabus.Gaffey, Mike email@example.com
SpSt 581 Field Visits to Space Centers
Social Course; Sub-discipline: Policy
This course will provide a first-hand knowledge of selected space centers in the U.S. and/or abroad through an organized field visit. The field visit will be led by a space studies faculty and will include prior preparation through readings, class seminars, lectures and written assignments.
May be repeated up to a maximum of 3 credits.
Graded as pass/fail (S/U).
Required Textbook: None (Confirmed for Spring 2017)Casler, James firstname.lastname@example.org
Courses and course information are subject to change without notice.