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The solar system and the night sky

Updated Monday, 24 July 2023

YXM130 Example subject pathway created by Andrew Webster, YXM130 Curriculum Manager.

Find out more about The Open University's Natural Sciences courses

I’m the Curriculum Manager for YXM130 and my favourite characteristic about the module is that it provides you with the option to study what interests you.

If I was to study this module, I would be interested in studying courses that would help to expand my knowledge of the solar system and the night sky. I am fascinated by the planets, stars, and moons we have in our solar system and how they all differ. For example, planets can have different atmospheres and are made up of different materials and gases, some stars shine brighter than others and many moons can orbit one planet.

I would consider studying  the OpenLearn courses below to help me discover and understand more about the following:

  • The size of the solar system and how it works.
  • Which planets have moons and what the differences between them are.
  • How the universe was formed and whether there could be planets beyond our solar system. Are there other lifeforms out there?!
  • What I can see when I look into the sky at night and how Earth looks from space. Can any features on Earth be identified from space?
  • What energy we might be able to harness from the solar system on Earth and why this is important for the future of our planet. Could this help reduce climate change?

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