The new study programme will prepare space engineers
The first study programme in the Czech Republic focused entirely on the space industry - this is the new English field of Space Applications taught from next year at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Communication, BUT. In collaboration with the European Space Agency and companies in the field, students will learn to build their own cubesat and have a look at top space research centres.
"One has to discover new things, be it the universe or the oceans. Take, for example, Elon Musk, who is trying to get humanity to Mars and increase our chances of survival. New space exploration companies and start-ups are emerging faster and faster. With this, the demand for system engineers with knowledge of the space industry is logically growing. And that is exactly why we decided to establish a new study programme Space Applications," the guarantor Tomáš Götthans from the BUT Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Communication explains the programme.
Graduates of the new field will find employment as systems engineers with an overview of the various systems found in satellites or spacecraft. The programme combines knowledge of electrical engineering with knowledge of mechanical engineering, which is helped by the staff of the Institute of Aviation, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, BUT.
The new field at the Brno University of Technology will be taught exclusively in English. "In our opinion, it makes no sense to consider studying in a language other than English, on which the space industry is built. This way, future graduates will easily find employment anywhere in the world,” Götthans, who prepared the programme with several partners, explains. In addition to the European Space Agency (ESA), companies such as SAB Aerospace, OHB, Honeywell, the Brno Observatory, JIC, the Brno Space Cluster, the Aeronautical Research and Testing Institute and many others also took part in the creation of the field.
"The study will also include an excursion to the German DLR, which is the German Aerospace Centre, or to the Dutch headquarters of the European Space Agency. Thanks to our contacts, we can also take students to these top foreign workplaces," Götthans from the FEEC Institute of Radio Electronics says.
Students can look forward to subjects such as astrophysics, where they penetrate the secrets of the motion of cosmic bodies, or subjects studying electromagnetic phenomena, radiation, photonics and much more. As part of one of the courses, students in groups will also try to create a real cubesate or a smaller satellite. "In the next year, programming, design of antennas and communication devices or the basics of cryptography will be added, which is a very current topic not only in the field of communication with satellites," the programme guarantor is enticing.
Although English degree programmes must include tuition fees by law, the fee has been reduced to a minimum. Space Applications students will pay a thousand euros for a year of study. However, as many students have a paid internship with one of the partners, their tuition fees should be compensated during their studies. The programme is now designed as a follow-up master's degree for undergraduate graduates. Applicants must pass a test in electrical engineering, mathematics, physics, and computer science together with a short interview in English.
"Today, the number of small satellites in space is growing enormously because their cost of launching has dropped. We see the potential for a number of companies, even smaller ones, which can help, for example, capture the Earth, monitor CO2 in the atmosphere or ensure the communication of smart devices in the field of the Internet of Things. There are a number of those applications. And just as the number of companies grows, so does the demand for systems engineers with knowledge of the space industry,” Götthans added, who created the programme based on the demand of industrial partners.
Applications for the first study programme for the space industry can be submitted up to 31st March 2022. More information about Space Applications programme can be found here.