Research

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    Dynamics and Impacts

    The interiors of gas giants and stars transfer their internal energy by a mixture of convective and radiative processes. Giant impacts occur frequently during the final stages of accretion.

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    Giant and Extrasolar Planets

    UCSC astronomers are responsible for discovering roughly half of all known extra-solar planets. The winds and interiors of the giant planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune) are poorly understood despite thirty years of spacecraft observation.
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    Satellites and Small Bodies

    Small bodies include the satellites of the planets, such as Europa and the Moon, and also the debris left over from solar system formation, that is comets and asteroids.
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    Terrestrial Planets

    Terrestrial planets are Earth-like planets  made up of rocks or metals with a hard surface — making them different from other planets that lack a solid surface. Terrestrial planets also have a molten heavy metal core, few moons, and a variety of topological features like valleys, volcanoes and craters. In our solar system, there are four terrestrial planets, which also happen to be the four closest to the sun: Mercury, Venus Earth and Mars.

See Also