The Centre for Space Physics examines the source of space weather, the Sun, to better understand its impact on billions of dollars worth of spacecraft and related infrastructure.

Space physics is about space weather. This is different to the weather forecasts provided by the Bureau of Meteorology, although many of the terms are similar.  For example, in space weather, wind speed refers to the solar wind, and a storm warning means bright aurora and possible disruptions to satellite operations, communications systems and electricity supply networks.

Space weather is driven by solar magnetism: from sunspots to solar flares and coronal mass ejections. We work with sophisticated simulations and models of the Sun’s interior, surface and atmosphere, and use state-of-the-art observations from NASA and ESA space-based satellites. Our research also explores the magnetic field in other stars, and advanced magnetohydrodynamics.

Students who study solar physics have the background knowledge and skills to move into the fields of plasma physics, other fields of  astrophysics, magnetoghydrodynamics, data science, and the space industry.