Academic Program

Academic Program

Explore the Solar System and beyond with interdisciplinary coursework, access to world-class instruments and laboratories, and diverse research opportunities.

Planetary science includes the study of the eight planets in our Solar System, but the intellectual boundaries of of the field extend far beyond. Fundamental questions about the origin and evolution of other solar systems and the existence of extraterrestrial life require broad perspectives, from the subatomic world of fundamental particles to the macroscopic world of galaxies.

Graduate Program

The Department of Planetary Sciences offers multidisciplinary programs leading to the Doctor of Philosophy degree with a major in planetary sciences. Students may also pursue a Graduate Minor in Planetary Sciences.

Undergraduate Minor

The Department of Planetary Sciences offers an undergraduate minor in Planetary Sciences.

Astrobiology Minor

Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary field that combines astronomy, geology, biology and chemistry.


Most LPL graduates are currently active in solar systems science, many in roles of leadership in national professional organizations and on NASA advisory boards.

View Alumni