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Masters Degrees in Space Science, Belgium

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The space sector plays an important role in economic, social, technological and scientific developments. The future of the sector and its manifold applications require highly skilled experts with a broad interdisciplinary perspective. Read more

The space sector plays an important role in economic, social, technological and scientific developments. The future of the sector and its manifold applications require highly skilled experts with a broad interdisciplinary perspective. The development of innovative space technologies is fostered by an intense symbiosis between technological sectors and the challenges set by fundamental research in exact and biomedical sciences. Additionally, the economic and social valorisation of space technologies requires an efficient relationship between project developers and the economic sector.

The large scale of space projects imposes important constraints on management. The international character of the space sector and of its broad applications, including the relevance of space for security and defence, implies a need for European and international legal and political measures.

What is the Master of Space Studies all about?

The Master of Space Studies programme is designed to prepare scientists to respond to a myriad of challenges and opportunities. In addition to coursework in space sciences, the curriculum is enriched by a Master's thesis and a series of guest lecturers from international, national and regional institutions.

This is an advanced Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

The programme is conceived as an advanced master’s programme and as such it requires applicants to have successfully completedan initial master’s programme in either the humanities and social sciences, exact sciences and technology or biomedical sciences.

  • The interdisciplinary nature of the programme is expressed by the common core of 25 ECTS in introductory coursework. These courses are mandatory for every student. They acquaint the student with the different aspects that together form the foundation of space-related activities. The backgrounds of the students in programme are diverse, but all students have the ability to transfer knowledge across disciplines.
  • Depending on their background and interests, students have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge through more domain-specific optional courses, for a total of 20 ECTS, covering the domains of (A) Space Law, Policy, Business and Management, (B) Space Sciences and (C) Space Technology and Applications, with the possibility to combine the latter two. 
  • For the master’s thesis (15 ECTS), students are embedded in a research team of one of the organising universities, or in an external institute, organisation or industrial company, in which case an academic supervisor is assigned as the coordinator of the project. The master’s thesis is the final section of the interdisciplinary programme, in which the acquired knowledge and abilities are applied to a complex and concrete project.

Department

The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques. Fifteen teams perform research at an international level. Publication of research results in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists are priorities for the department.

New physics and innovation in the development of new techniques are important aspects of our mission. The interaction with industry (consulting, patents...) and society (science popularisation) are additional points of interest. Furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several study programmes.

Objectives

The objectives of the programme are to develop students' knowledge of all aspects of space studies generally and, specifically, to impart:

  • the ability to situate the relevance of students' own curriculum in the broad field of space studies
  • specialised knowledge and attitudes in specific fields relevant to space studies;
  • insight in the development and realisation of large international projects;
  • abilities necessary for the guiding of complex projects.

Career perspectives

Graduates will be in a position to develop a career in the space sector or in space research.

Depending on his/her previous degree, the student will find opportunities in the space industry (engineers, product developers and technical-commercial functions with a high degree of technical and financial responsibilities), research institutions with activities in space (researchers and project developers), (inter)governmental bodies with responsibilities in research and development programmes related to space (project managers and directors, policy makers on national, European and international levels). The spectrum of employment possibilities encompasses not only the space sector as such, but also the broader context of companies and organisations which use or are facilitated by space missions.



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