In the 2024-2025 Catalog

Engineering Physics (EP)


EP 101  Current Topics in Space Science  1 Credit (1,0)

Survey seminar exploring contemporary space-related research and career topics. Development of knowledge, skills, and awareness of industry standards, including tackling complex science and engineering problems. Critical thinking, time management, study skills, internships, student organizations, and university services.

EP 199  Special Topics in Engineering Physics  1-6 Credit

Individual independent or directed studies of selected topics.

EP 200  Machine Shop Laboratory  1 Credit (0,1)

Introduction to machine shop techniques including familiarization with riveting, sheet metal forming, welding, and machining.

EP 299  Special Topics in Engineering Physics  1-6 Credit

Individual independent or directed studies of selected topics.

EP 320  Electro-Optical Engineering  3 Credits (3,0)

Geometrical optics of mirrors, thin and thick lenses, prisms, and systems. Ray tracing with optical CAD. Fiber optics applications. Physical optics including interference, diffraction, and polarization. Phaser methods. Engineering considerations in choice of different types of detectors. Space systems applications. Image processing. Emphasis on design.
Prerequisites: EGR 115 or CS 223 and PS 303 Corequisites: MA 345 & PS 305

EP 335  Nanomaterials and Nanoscience  3 Credits (3,0)

Nanomaterials are substances that have dimensions on the order of 1 nm to 100 nm. This is an introductory course designed to acquaint upper-level science and engineering students with the new and rapidly changing field of nanotechnology. Topics include the synthesis and characteristics of nanodots, nanowires, and nanotubes; characterization methods such as atomic force microscopy, scanning electron microscopy, and x-ray diffraction; and the large number of applications that employ nanomaterials; and nanotoxicology.
Prerequisites: CHM 110 or CHM 140 and PS 228 or PS 250 and MA 242

EP 340  Introduction to Space Systems Design  2 Credits (2,1.5)

Introduction to space mission analysis and design process, mission characterization, evaluation and requirements definitions, including numerical modeling and simulation of engineering systems, the finite element method and the finite difference method. Application of industry standards relevant to solving complex science and engineering problems.
Prerequisites: CS 223 or EGR 115

EP 345  Space Science Seminar  1 Credit

Seminar-style course, with lectures, readings, and writing on topics of current interest in Space Science.
Prerequisites: Junior Standing

EP 391  Microcomputers and Electronic Instrumentation  3 Credits (3,0)

This course will provide students with a background in electronics as it applies to the design of circuits of measuring instruments and to interface sensors and computers. The program of study will concentrate on following the form of the electrical signal from light, pressure, temperature and other sensors as it proceeds through signal conditioning circuits and into the microcomputer for further processing.
Prerequisites: PS 228 or PS 250 & PS 228L & EGR 115 or CS 223 Corequisites: MA 345

EP 391L  Microcomputer and Electronic Instrumentation Laboratory  1 Credit (0,3)

Two 90 minute laboratory sessions per week, with experiments complementing the lectures of EP 391 on a weekly basis. The labs will introduce the students to software modeling of circuits; cover analog devices such as diodes, transistors, op-amps, motors; digital devices such as a microcontroller, multiplexers, communication radios; and also practice device level C-programming concepts.
Corequisites: EP 391

EP 393  Spaceflight Dynamics  3 Credits (3,0)

This course is a study of the basic topics in analytical dynamics, two body orbits and the initial value problem, the two body orbital boundary value problem, Earth coverage and space mission geometry, non-Keplerian effects, orbital maneuvers and rendezvous, interplanetary transfer.
Prerequisites: MA 345 and CS 223 or EGR 115

EP 394  Space Systems Engineering  3 Credits (3,0)

Development of the fundamental principles used in the engineering and design of space systems. Several major subsystems including power, telemetry and command, communications, thermal control and guidance, navigation, and control subsystems are covered. Topics on space environmental control and life support systems, space system integration and testing, and space system operations are also discussed.
Prerequisites: AE 313 or EP 393

EP 399  Special Topics in Engineering Physics  1-6 Credit

Individual independent or directed studies of selected topics.

EP 400  Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics  3 Credits (3,0)

Basic thermodynamics, entropy, kinetic theory, distribution of molecular velocities, Maxwell-Boltzmann statistics, Bose-Einstein statistics, Fermi-Dirac statistics, microcanonical ensemble, canonical ensemble.
Prerequisites: PS 303

EP 410  Space Physics  3 Credits (3,0)

This course is a study of the origin, evolution, and structure of the neutral and ionized terrestrial atmosphere, the effect of sun's electromagnetic radiation on Earth's ozone shield, photo-ionization and thermal structure of the neutral atmosphere as well as on the ionosphere and magnetosphere, solar disturbances and their effects on satellite orbit decay and on long distance communication. It also includes studies of composition, thermodynamics, physical processes of the near-Earth space environment, rocket and satellite monitoring, remote sensing, numerical and instrument design considerations.
Prerequisites: PS 320 Corequisites: EP 440

EP 411  Space Physics II  3 Credits (3,0)

Plasma physics applied to the interplanetary medium and planetary magnetospheres: solar wind. Magneto-hydrodynamics. Interaction between planetary magnetospheres and the solar wind. Auroral dynamics. Planetary atmospheres and ionospheres. Magnetosphere-ionosphere coupling. Energetic particle dynamics. Ring currents. The space radiation environment. Space weather. Satellite missions to Earth and other planets.
Prerequisites: EP 410 and EP 440

EP 420  Planetary Science  3 Credits (3,0)

This course is a study of the planetary system: origin, evolution, composition, present configuration, dynamics, interiors, surfaces, atmospheres, and magnetospheres of the planets, satellites, asteroids, and comets. Experiments and spacecraft missions to aid in determination of the origin and evolution of the solar system are stressed.
Prerequisites: PS 303

EP 425  Observational Astronomy  3 Credits (2,3)

Basic design and use of an optical telescope, fundamentals of astronomical optics including refracting and reflecting systems, principles and applications of optical filters and adaptive optics. Design optimization and trade-offs in an observing system. Telescope system calibration and techniques for enhancing tracking accuracy. Visual observation and analysis of images of the sun, moon, planets, stars, nebulae, and galaxies. Electronic imaging including quantification of radiant energy, spectroscopy, and techniques for reducing the effects of noise sources. Optical and detector design trade-offs for measurement optimization.
Prerequisites: PS 303 and PS 305 and PS 224 and PS 224L or PS 316 and PS 318

EP 430  Spacecraft Instrumentation  3 Credits (3,0)

This is a required course in the Engineering Physics degree program with a Spacecraft Instrumentation AOC. The course will undertake the study of space environment and models used for engineering analysis. Topics include considerations for instrument design in space environment, such as plasma interactions, chemical reactions, optical and other radiation effects, and thermal issues. These will include theory, engineering, and data reduction techniques for in situ spacecraft instrumentation and for spacecraft command and telemetry systems.
Prerequisites: CEC 320 & CEC 315 Corequisites: EP 394 & EP 391

EP 440  Engineering Electricity and Magnetism  3 Credits (3,0)

This course is a study of the Solutions of electrostatics problems using Poisson's Equation and Laplace's Equation, electrostatic energy, electric current, magnetic field, electromagnetic induction, Maxwell's equations (reflection, refraction, waveguides, antenna radiation).
Prerequisites: PS 303 and PS 305 and PS 320 and EGR 115 or CS 223 Corequisites: MA 442

EP 448  Control System Theory and Engineering Applications  3 Credits (3,0)

Physics-based modeling, analysis, and design of linear and nonlinear control systems using time and frequency domain techniques. System linearization and Lyapunov's first theorem, closed-loop (feedback) control system performance analysis and stability, stability margins, Laplace transforms, state space models, PID controllers, linear quadratic regulators (LQR), linear quadratic gaussian (LQG) control, pole placement methods, root locus, linear observer design, and control design and numerical simulation. Introduction to Lyapunov's second theorem and overview of nonlinear control methods including adaptive control, neural network-based control, and sliding mode control.
Prerequisites: EP 440

EP 455  Quantum Mechanics  3 Credits (3,0)

The Schrodinger equation in one and three dimensions and its solutions for step potentials, the harmonic oscillator, and the hydrogen atom. Operators and their matrix representations: Dirac bracket formalism, angular momentum and spin, and spin-orbit interaction. Identical particles and exchange symmetries. Time-independent and time-dependent perturbation theory and approximation methods: transition rates, Fermis rule, scattering theory. Classical and quantum statistical distributions.
Corequisites: EP 440 for BSEP BSAA and BSSP majors

EP 492  Senior Project  3 Credits (3,0)

This is an optional capstone course for senior Space Physics or Astronomy & Astrophysics students. Students will carry out their senior research project in an area of interest that overlaps the interest of the supervising faculty.Pre-Requisite: Must be a senior with grades of a B or better in all-300-level EP and PS courses required in the student's degree program.
Prerequisites: Senior with grades of a B or better in all-300-level EP and PS courses required in the student's degree program

EP 496  Space Systems Design I  3 Credits (1,3)

Undergraduate research, supervised by physics or engineering faculty, leading to the writing of a technical design report involving application of appropriate industry standards to a complex science and/or engineering problem in an area of current interest in engineering physics
Prerequisites: EP 340 and EP 394

EP 497  Space Systems Design II  3 Credits (2,4)

Continuation of EP 496, completion of the senior design project, involving solution of a complex problem relevant to engineering physics that incorporates appropriate industry standards and presentation of results in a seminar format.
Prerequisites: EP 496

EP 499  Special Topics in Engineering Physics  1-6 Credit

Individual independent or directed studies of selected topics.